Microsoft boasts better performance, efficiency and security on Edge with Anniversary Update

In a new blog post today, Microsoft has introduced EdgeHTML 14, its third and most significant update to "the Microsoft Edge web platform" since it was announced almost one year ago. According to the company, EdgeHTML 14 can be utilized by developers and users alike, once they install the Windows 10 Anniversary Update - which started rolling out just a couple of days ago.

Microsoft claims that this update to Edge brings with it improved performance, efficiency, security and compatibility. The company went on to say that:

EdgeHTML 14 raises the bar across every component of the browser, introducing a new extension platform, a class-leading focus on accessibility and inclusive design, and doubling down on fundamentals like efficiency, security and performance. It also represents another leap forward in compatibility and interoperability with the modern web, making it more painless than ever for developers to code and test for Windows customers.

Additionally, Microsoft has also reminded users that extensions for Microsoft Edge - which, according to the company, has been one of the most requested features since the company shipped EdgeHTML 13 - are now available from the Windows Store.

Furthermore, Microsoft also boasted browser accessibility with Microsoft Edge in the Windows 10 Anniversary Update. According to the company, its Edge browser was the only one to achieve a perfect score in HTML5 Accessibility tests. Firefox came in second with 89%, with Chrome (81%) and Safari (73%) trailing behind. Meanwhile, Internet Explorer 11 managed a measly 56%, which goes to show how much the company has improved with Microsoft Edge on Windows 10. Microsoft states:

Major improvements across both the browser frame and rendering engine mean that Microsoft Edge is easier to navigate with a keyboard and to use in high contrast mode or with assistive technologies like screen readers. Thanks to native support for the modern UI Automation accessibility framework powered by an all-new accessibility architecture, Microsoft Edge empowers developers to build more accessible user experiences powered by HTML5. We’ve even built new open-source tools so sites and other browser vendors can automate the HTML5Accessibility test suite.

Additionally, the company touted battery saving features as well - recounting to its showdown with other browsers a couple of months ago - claiming that Edge had lead to battery savings of up to 90% in many cases, due to increasing the efficiency of Flash.

Microsoft Edge is available on Windows 10 Mobile too

Apart from this, Microsoft touted security features as well, stating that:

In the Anniversary Update, we’re further reinforcing Microsoft Edge with features like Kernel Attack Protection, which makes kernel attacks more difficult by reducing the kernel components exposed to the browser and enforcing an allow list for kernel calls from Flash and the content process. In addition, Flash is now isolated to a separate process running in a separate AppContainer, reducing the risk associated with Flash vulnerabilities.

The company also stated that it had worked on improving the performance of Microsoft Edge with fixes to its Chakra JavaScript engine and memory optimizations. Microsoft also noted how it had made scrolling easier by taking it off the UI thread. Practically, this means that even when websites are busy loading, users can scroll up and down via touch, touchpad, mousewheel or a keyboard.

Microsoft also highlighted how it had worked on improving compatibility with websites in EdgeHTML 14, saying that:

With EdgeHTML 14, we’ve continued to build on the same strategy, informed by more robust Internet-scale data than ever before and an unprecedented volume of direct developer and customer feedback enabled by the Windows Insider Program and the tools on Microsoft Edge Dev.

The company noted how EdgeHTML 14 adds support for new HTML5 standards, JavaScript features, media standards, and F12 Developer Tools. Microsoft also stated that with EdgeHTML 14, it is now laying foundations for the future, by working on Web Authentication and Web Payments. It went on to say that this will power "next generation web apps that will work offline and connect to the Windows Store and Action Center for a seamless experience powered by web technologies."

As always, Microsoft has implored users to file issues with Edge here, and vote for your favorite features here, to "help shape what's next for Microsoft Edge".

Source: Microsoft

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