Microsoft Edge: It’s fast, and it’s new. But its lack of support for browser extensions, or other clear advantages over popular browsers, have some calling it Internet Explorer with lipstick.
On Wednesday, Microsoft laid out a road map of improvements it plans to make to Edge and EdgeHTML, the engine that powers the browser, in 2016.
Regarding extensions, the company says a new extensions platform is on the way to Windows Insiders soon, and also promises to shortly share guidance with developers on how to build and manage their own extensions. These are changes that Microsoft has been promising for several months.
Also in the pipeline: a slew of accessibility improvements so that users of all abilities can use Edge in combination with both Windows Narrator and third-party assistive technologies.
Microsoft says it will work on improving everyday performance of the browser, including enhancing keyboard scrolling, improving background tab suspension and timers, and isolating Adobe Flash into a separate process while pausing unnecessary content.
New previews of the browser will offer the ability to use Windows Hello face and fingerprint recognition to log in to websites that adopt certain APIs, Microsoft says. They might also incorporate new standards for web payments.
The Edge development team is also working on the following technologies:
Fetch API (a component technology of Service Worker; our initial implementation will focus on XHR-style scenarios)
Web Notifications (integrated with the Windows 10 Action Center)
High Resolution Time Level 2
Future ECMAScript proposals – Array.prototype.includes, String.prototype.padStart, String.prototype.padEnd, Object.values, Object.entries
JS pipeline improvements for future WebAssembly work
For more, see Microsoft’s full blog post.