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In With The New: Microsoft Edge To Replace Internet Explorer

In With The New: Microsoft Edge To Replace Internet Explorer

In With The New: Microsoft Edge To Replace Internet Explorer

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This year saw major news out of Redmond, Washington, with Microsoft releasing both a new operating system, Windows 10, and a new flagship browser, Microsoft Edge. Formerly codenamed Project Spartan, Edge is the default browser for both desktop and mobile versions of Windows 10. While Internet Explorer 11 will continue to be bundled with Windows 10 for compatibility reasons, the company’s heart is clearly with the new Edge. So, why has Microsoft retired old, faithful IE? And what have they replaced it with?

Internet Explorer has been the most popular desktop browser in the world for decades. So why overhaul it? To many pundits, Edge is an attempt to start fresh. Each version of IE built on the foundation of the previous, and over the years, this has resulted in a product that is bigger, slower, and less secure than it needs to be. Starting from scratch with the latest technology as a foundation allows Microsoft to leapfrog the competition back to the cutting edge with a faster, leaner product. Plus, by ditching versioned releases (there will only be one Edge – no Edge 2, Edge 3, Edge 4, etc.), Microsoft’s browser will always be up to date and able to securely use the latest web technology without qualification.

But it’s not just a new engine under the hood – Microsoft Edge is pushing the envelope in other ways. Beyond the usual web-browsing capabilities you’d expect, Edge is rolling out some brand new, stand-out key features that sound pretty great.

Make a Web Note

The web note button is a pen and paper icon that, when clicked, allows the user to take their own notes directly on the page. Once the web note button is clicked, a set of tools appear, providing the user with different style options. They can choose between different pen sizes and colours, use a marker, an eraser and a crop tool, as well as use the keyboard to type a comment. These notes can then be saved and uploaded to OneNote or shared with other users using the app installed on their system. The Make a Web Note feature has potential to streamline the way clients and production teams communicate.

Store It In The Hub

The hub will be the central place where users can store all the items (pages, links, images, articles, downloads) they find on the web. The Hub can be visited at any time to access any stored materials and browsing history, simply by selecting the Hub icon. This feature makes the browser more personal and customizable for users.

Set The Reading View For Less Distractions

As online reading increases, options for getting rid of sidebars and advertisements and for creating a more reader-friendly look become more important. The reading view button, located next to the address bar, allows users to read from a screen that looks more like a PDF document and less like a busy web page competing for attention. The page is transformed instantly with a more legible font, increased white space, and reduced advertising content.

Create A Reading List

If you find yourself getting a lot of use out of the Read View, then you’ll love the Reading List feature. Much like creating a favourite page links list, a reading list is a set of web pages that have been marked for later reading. Edge allows users to create a reading list as they browse the web, which they can return to at a later time. This list is also stored in the Hub.

Meet Cortana – Your New Personal Assistant

Perhaps the most impressive feature of Edge is its virtual assistant Cortana, which was first introduced on Windows smartphones. Cortana will browse the web for you, find items on your PC, and learn your browsing patterns by continually monitoring your activity. For example, if you often seek fitness-related information while using Edge’s search engine, you might get news about a new gym opening in the neighbourhood. If this feature is not for you, Cortana can be switched off, but it will still take note of how you browse the web, should you change your mind and turn it back on.

With all these new features and a revamped core, Microsoft Edge could very well be one of the most subtly futuristic products to hit the technology shelves this year. So, fasten your seat belts and get ready for a brand-new surfing experience as soon as you upgrade your operating system to Windows 10.

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