- Feb 25, 2013
Microsoft released the first beta version of its overhauled Edge web browser Tuesday -- and it wants you to help squash its bugs to smooth the way for the mainstream release in coming months. Microsoft's new Edge is built on top of Chromium, Google's open-source browser foundation for Chrome. The new Edge beta is available for Windows 7, Windows 10 and MacOS.
Until now, Microsoft had only released relatively unpolished Canary and dev versions that are updated rapidly with the latest changes but that aren't as well tested. The beta version is a step in the company's plan to once again offer a web browser that's useful and influential -- and that restores Microsoft's influence in the browser technology world.
"We're ready to take on a larger audience," said Joe Belfiore, corporate vice president of Microsoft Windows Experiences. "We want data about how the browser performs. Getting to a wider audience helps us improve the quality."
You can download the new browser beta at Microsoft's Edge Insider site.
Microsoft hopes to release the stable version of Edge in late 2019 or early 2020, he said. After that, perhaps after a few months, Microsoft will swap out the old Edge so all Windows 10 users get the new Chromium version.
You might be happy with Chrome or whatever other browser you're using, but Microsoft has a lot of customers, and there's significant interest in the new Chromium-based Edge. More than 1 million copies have been downloaded, Belfiore said.