Well, I sure didn’t expect this kind of news to land in the middle of the night.
Microsoft’s Edge web browser has seen little success since its debut on Windows 10 back in 2015. Built from the ground up with a new rendering engine known as EdgeHTML, Microsoft Edge was designed to be fast, lightweight, and secure, but launched with a plethora of issues which resulted in users rejecting it early on. Edge has since struggled to gain any traction, thanks to its continued instability and lack of mindshare, from users and web developers.
Because of this, I’m told that Microsoft is throwing in the towel with EdgeHTML and is instead building a new web browser powered by Chromium, a rendering engine first popularized by Google’s Chrome browser. Codenamed Anaheim, this new web browser for Windows 10 will replace Edge as the default browser on the platform. It’s unknown at this time if Anaheim will use the Edge brand or a new brand, or if the user interface between Edge and Anaheim is different. One thing is for sure, however; EdgeHTML is dead.
I use Edge, but not necessarily because of the rendering engine – I use it because of its proper Windows UI and snappy overall performance. If Microsoft can maintain those strong points while switching to Chromium, that’s a plus in my book. It does raise concerns about the further consolidation of the web on Chromium (or Blink, more accurately) and WebKit, but since nobody used or cared about Edge anyway, I doubt this news has any real impact on this specific issue.