Is Microsoft Edge an Improvement Over IE?

Microsoft’s newest operating system — Windows 10 — brings a host of new updates and features to its most popular applications. One of the biggest departures is that the default browser is an all-new Web browser that replaces Internet Explorer (IE) called Edge.

Microsoft developed Edge to effectively replace the Internet Explorer legacy. Although it sports a similar logo to IE, Edge is a radical departure from IE. It brings some impressive new developments to the Windows 10 experience and his a huge improvement over its predecessor.

Why the Change?

20 years after the first version of IE was first released, it comes as no surprise that Internet Explorer is bogged down with support for old technologies, amongst other issues that has seen its market share steadily decline in recent years against its main competitors Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.

Microsoft stripped many outdated components from Internet Explorer to deliver a more faster and streamlined experience. ActiveX, Browser Helper Objects (BHOs), Visual Basic Script and many more features and support are not present in Edge.

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Increased Speed

Internet Explorer has been utilizing the Trident rendering engine since its first release. Microsoft EdgeHTML is the replacement engine for the Edge browser that promises to load web page much faster than Internet Explorer.

Enhanced Security

One of the most important improvements in Edge is security. Web pages you visit are rendered inside a sandbox to thwart malicious attacks from penetrating your computer. Edge brings HTTP Strict Transport Security and HTML5 Content Security Policy — new Internet security standards — not available in Internet Explorer.

Next Generation Search

Edge features powerful search integration. Cortana — Microsoft’s virtual assistant — and its Bing search engine are connected to Edge. Questions you enter in Edge’s address bar are answered immediately without needing to open a full Bing Web search. This further integrates integrates Bing into the browsing experience as Microsoft wants the search engine to gain market share.

Revamped Extensions

Microsoft Edge makes developing browser extensions much easier than Internet Explorer. The new Web browser runs extensions built on JavaScript and HTML code; a standard for developers creating extensions for other browsers, such as Chrome and Firefox. New extensions won’t go into effect until a later update to Edge. Internet Explorer will remain in the background as a fall-back for compatibility issues.

New Innovations

One of the more innovative new features found in Microsoft Edge targets Windows 10 tablets and touchscreen monitors. You can annotate directly on a web page using a variety of markup tools, such as a pen, highlighter and text. You can add public notes to web pages and save pages directly to your bookmarks, a reading list or to your notebooks in Microsoft OneNote.

While some features and technologies have been removed in the release of Microsoft Edge, the new Web browser brings a ton of powerful tools to Windows 10. Test out its features and performance against your browser of choice and see how it stacks up.

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