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Microsoft confirm their new Chromium-powered Edge browser is coming to Linux

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Not Linux gaming related, sure but still very interesting news. During their Ignite conference, Microsoft confirmed their new Chromium-based Edge browser will release for Linux.

The new Edge will release in full on January 15 next year, although it's not currently known when the Linux version will land. It's not just going to be using Chromium behind the scenes though, Microsoft are actively contributing to the open source code. This was talked about during their recent "State of the browser: Microsoft Edge" presentation.


Image Source: Microsoft.

During the presentation when the slide above was on-screen, Microsoft's Colleen Williams simply said "[…] and Linux is coming at a later time." towards the end of the slide. Hilariously, if you turn your volume up you can hear a single "woo!" from someone in the crowd. You can watch the event yourself here. Linux is mentioned at 08:34.

Microsoft also confirmed during the presentation that the new Edge will be compatible with Chrome extensions, with most being able to work without any change. It will also include a web-based cross-platform store, so it won't be tied to Windows.

I think it's good that Microsoft is moving towards open source software, rather than sticking to their own proprietary projects. Enabling users to have their favourite applications on Linux breaks down another barrier to entry, which is a really important point. I know, I know, Edge is not exactly one of those big favourite applications (yet). My wider point here is that change can be difficult for anyone, even a small change, so if you can keep a few things the same it makes it easier. We all know someone, or we've seen it mentioned somewhere about x application not being available on Linux.

Options are good. Microsoft being more open is great. Hopefully this keeps up, could you imagine if they fully opened up something like DirectX/Direct3D in future and made it cross-platform or they slowly dropped it in favour of an open standard like they're doing here with Edge? Certainly would be interesting.

What do you think? Will you try it? Unleash your mind in the comments.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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67 comments
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Nezchan 5 November 2019 at 4:32 pm UTC
There's been some suggestion that Microsoft isn't finding the OS market to be as lucrative as it used to be, and has an eye toward moving to Google-like services instead. If that's the case, then they may be backing off from the idea that Linux is a competitor in that space. I don't pretend to know much about it, but this would be consistent with such a shift.


Last edited by Nezchan on 5 November 2019 at 4:32 pm UTC
Mountain Man 5 November 2019 at 4:36 pm UTC
No thanks. I'll stick with Firefox, partly because I don't trust Microsoft, but mainly because it's the only browser for Android that supports extensions, and I consider at least uBlock Origin, Privacy Badger, and HTTPS Everywhere to be indispensable for privacy and security. I looked at Edge on Android, and it at least has Adblock Plus as a standard feature, but it's disabled by default, and when you enable it, you have to be sure to turn off "acceptable ads" as well, which is an option hidden in the "Advanced Features" menu.

I give them credit for at least including an ad blocker, but without being able to install third-party extensions not controlled by Microsoft, there's no way to stop them from hoovering up your personal data and browsing habits. No thank you.
linuxcity 5 November 2019 at 4:38 pm UTC
ill give it a shot when it comes out see how it is.this will get people talking though.
stud68 5 November 2019 at 4:38 pm UTC
Maybe get Netflix in 4k with this.
I hate having to switch over to the TV to watch 4k.
Liam Dawe 5 November 2019 at 4:38 pm UTC
NezchanThere's been some suggestion that Microsoft isn't finding the OS market to be as lucrative as it used to be, and has an eye toward moving to Google-like services instead. If that's the case, then they may be backing off from the idea that Linux is a competitor in that space. I don't pretend to know much about it, but this would be consistent with such a shift.
I think the rise of Android and iOS has helped this somewhat. OS updates are free, same with Linux and macOS nowadays also offers free upgrades. Microsoft has also gone that way with Windows 10, they're treating it now as a constantly updated service as opposed to doing Windows 11/12 and so on. So yeah, they're going to be making far less from it that way. Not just that but Windows 10 seems to be fully usable without a product key too so they've probably lost some more money there by not forcing activation like they used to. It all points towards them shifting away from the Windows desktop as a priority.


Last edited by Liam Dawe on 5 November 2019 at 4:39 pm UTC
Linas 5 November 2019 at 4:40 pm UTC
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This may actually have long-term negative effect on WWW as a whole, as Microsoft has just given Google complete control over the web technologies. I am already noticing more and more websites that work in Chrome, but not Firefox. Chrome is becoming the new Internet Explorer. Quite literally.

I really would have preferred that Microsoft partnered up with Mozilla, to give an alternative browser a fighting chance, instead of going the easiest way.
Alm888 5 November 2019 at 4:44 pm UTC
Have gone to the link to see the "woo!" in action…

"No compatible source was found for this media (0x10600003)"

I already *feel* the might of MS coming this way!
Liam Dawe 5 November 2019 at 4:45 pm UTC
Mountain ManI give them credit for at least including an ad blocker, but without being able to install third-party extensions not controlled by Microsoft, there's no way to stop them from hoovering up your personal data and browsing habits. No thank you.
From what they said, you should be able to install any Chromium extension it was even mentioned that you could get them from the Chrome store too.
Liam Dawe 5 November 2019 at 4:45 pm UTC
Alm888Have gone to the link to see the "woo!" in action…

"No compatible source was found for this media (0x10600003)"

I already *feel* the might of MS coming this way!
Weird, worked fine in Firefox for me and I don't think I have anything fancy installed.
Termy 5 November 2019 at 4:45 pm UTC
If i don't trust MS with my OS, i won't trust them with my browser...
Just wished they would release their games on Linux instead of this useless Edge thingy...^^

LinasThis may actually have long-term negative effect on WWW as a whole, as Microsoft has just given Google complete control over the web technologies. I am already noticing more and more websites that work in Chrome, but not Firefox. Chrome is becoming the new Internet Explorer. Quite literally.


Thats what i'm saying to people for a long time...especially people that ditch chrome for a chromium-based browser to "escape google"...


Last edited by Termy on 5 November 2019 at 4:47 pm UTC
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