Microsoft is now hoping to court users to Edge by changing the way that updates are handled for the browser. According to Neowin, Microsoft will decouple Edge updates from Windows 10 starting with Redstone 3. Currently, Edge only receives meaningful product updates when a major release of Windows 10 is delivered to customers (i.e. the Anniversary Update or Creators Update). Along the way, Microsoft sprinkles on security updates during Patch Tuesday, but nothing with regards to new functionality.
Competing browsers like Chrome and Firefox, however, are on a rapid-fire development schedule with new feature updates seemingly coming on a monthly basis. For example, Google released Chrome 56, 57, and 58 in January, March and April respectively.
By separating Edge updates from Windows, Microsoft’s software team will be able to allow Edge to stay fresh with more timely updates instead of just twice a year. The updates will reportedly be delivered not through Windows Update, but through the Windows Store like any other Universal Windows Platform (UWP) apps.
In the past, Microsoft has pointed to superior battery life with Edge compared to Chrome, Firefox and Opera. While the results are no doubt compelling, users still haven’t embraced Edge in large numbers. According to NetMarketShare, Chrome has actually seen its global market share increase from 48.65 percent to 59 percent during the past year (June 2016 through April 2017). During the same period, Edge has stagnated, increasing from 5.06 percent to just 5.65 percent.
The move to separate Edge releases from Windows 10 definitely sounds like a step in the right direction for Microsoft to better compete with browser heavyweights like Google Chrome, but it remains to be seen if that will be enough. What say you, HotHardware readers? If Microsoft implements faster, more efficient updates for Edge, would you be inclined to give the browser a chance?