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Microsoft Is Adopting Chromium

Joe Belfiore, VP of Windows at Microsoft:

We will move to a Chromium-compatible web platform for Microsoft Edge on the desktop. Our intent is to align the Microsoft Edge web platform simultaneously (a) with web standards and (b) with other Chromium-based browsers. This will deliver improved compatibility for everyone and create a simpler test-matrix for web developers.

This is really rather stunning news, especially when you think back to the browser war in the 1990s. And I don’t think it’s a good thing for the web.

David Heinemeier Hansson:

Sad to see Microsoft throw in the towel on their own browser rendering engine. The web doesn’t benefit when developers are encouraged to “just test in Chrome” through consolidation. We need a strong, diverse set of browsers. HANG IN THERE FIREFOX!

After Microsoft makes this switch, the only remaining major browser engines will be Chromium, Mozilla/Gecko, and Safari/WebKit. On the other hand, they plan to bring Edge to MacOS:

Microsoft Edge will now be delivered and updated for all supported versions of Windows and on a more frequent cadence. We also expect this work to enable us to bring Microsoft Edge to other platforms like macOS.

Microsoft making a browser for the Mac again also brings back memories of the ’90s, when IE was the best browser for the platform.

Friday, 7 December 2018