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New Microsoft browser coming based on Chromium (Update: Official, but will still be Edge)

Microsoft will revamp Edge, but keep the Edge branding. It also might bring the new Edge to macOS for the first time.

Published onDecember 6, 2018

Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

Update, December 6, 2018 (01:46 PM ET): Microsoft officially announced today that it is, in fact, going to release a Chromium-based browser, solidifying the rumor discussed in the article below. However, there’s more to the story than expected.

The first bit of news is that the Chromium browser will not replace Microsoft Edge — it will be Microsoft Edge. Apparently, Microsoft is going to keep the Edge branding while completely removing EdgeHTML from the core of the browser to replace it with Chromium.

Along with this, Microsoft is also promising to deliver the new Edge to “all supported versions of Windows and on a more frequent cadence.”

Finally, Microsoft will tentatively bring Edge to macOS for the first time, although its wording on this was less of a promise and more of a hint: “We also expect this work to enable us to bring Microsoft Edge to other platforms like macOS.” Take that as you will.

Microsoft didn’t give a hard date for when the switch from the old Edge to the new Edge will happen, but did say it will happen “over the next year or so.” Read the blog post for more information on what is coming for Edge in the future.

Original Article, December 4, 2018 (05:52 PM ET): According to an anonymous source speaking with Windows Central, Microsoft is working on a new browser, internally codenamed Anaheim. This unannounced browser is reportedly going to replace the beleaguered Microsoft Edge.

However, what’s most astonishing about this supposed browser is that it will be based on Chromium — the same open-source browser platform that powers Google Chrome.

If true, this would mark a huge turn of events for Microsoft, as it would essentially be the company throwing in the towel on its own Edge browser and adopting the Google Chrome framework.

According to the anonymous source, Microsoft could announce this new Chromium-based browser as soon as this week.

The Microsoft Edge browser was met with a lot of excitement when it launched three years ago, but since then has become a disappointment. Microsoft built the browser from the ground up using its own core called EdgeHTML, and intended Edge to replace the aged-out Internet Explorer.

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However, Google Chrome has come to dominate the browser wars, especially with its status as the default browser on Android devices. As such, many web developers treat Chrome as the base for their apps and sites, and many web apps are built specifically with Chrome (and thus Chromium) in mind. Microsoft Edge — and EdgeHTML — doesn’t stand a chance, and Microsoft apparently is ready to admit defeat.

What will this mean for you? If Microsoft does, in fact, announce a Chromium-based browser soon, it will render websites and apps in much the same way as Chrome, which will give the browser a better competitive edge (if you can excuse the pun). That’s good news for anyone out there who wants to browse the web with the power of Chrome but doesn’t want to actually use Chrome to do it.

We’ll have to wait to see if Microsoft makes this new browser announcement this week. In the meantime, what do you think? Are you ready to ditch Chrome for a similar browser made by Microsoft? Let us know in the comments!

NEXT: 15 best Android browsers of 2018