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Microsoft Edge has declared battle with its biggest rival Google Chrome with a bunch of excellent new features for businesses and consumers.
Microsoft Edge browser is growing in popularity—it’s number two to Google’s Chrome. Now, Edge is hoping to further grow its market share with the launch of a plethora of new features.
So, what’s new? Many of the Edge features are aimed at making shopping online easier and more private in the run up to the holiday season as most people shun the shops due to coronavirus.
In a blog, Microsoft detailed new Edge features including price comparison in Collections to help you find the best deals. You can use this in Edge by adding a product to a Collection and doing a one-click compare. Meanwhile, Bing Rebates, a feature that makes earning cash back easy, is now live in the U.S.
The Bing Rebates offers are now available right in the search results, saving the time of having to look for cashback offers across multiple websites.
At the same time, Microsoft is making it easier to hide your gift giving online from family with InPrivate search in Bing. You just need to open a New Tab Page in InPrivate Mode on your desktop or mobile version of Microsoft Edge and your searches won’t be saved. If you do use Bing, it’s actually a good idea to perform all your searches in this way for additional privacy.
Another cool feature is integration with Skype’s Meet Now for ad hoc video calls to family and friends, or colleagues. This will start to roll out to Edge this month, and will be available in Outlook on the web and on the Windows 10 taskbar in the coming weeks.
Web capture in Edge is another excellent feature that allows you to capture, save and share web content in your browser without using a separate screenshot tool. Available now, you can use the selection tool and drag towards the bottom of the page. Edge will automatically scroll the page down so you can get everything you need in one screenshot.
Features in Edge 86
These new features come as Microsoft launched Edge 86 this week, including other tools such as the ability to delete downloads from the download manager. You can also roll back to previous versions of Edge if you want to and improvements to the New Tab Page allow you to set your own images as background. Meanwhile, Automatic Profile Switching is now extended from Windows 10 only to Windows 7,8 and 8.1.
At the same time, Edge users can now see autocomplete suggestions when they start typing a search query on the Edge add-ons site, saving you time and effort when using the web. And Edge is also adding secure DNS support for IT admins in Edge 86. For additional security, the browser now alerts you if your passwords are found in an online leak.
Other recently announced Edge features now available include an update to the PDF experience, with the ability to add notes to your PDFs. It is also now possible to search for work files directly inside the Edge browser directly from the address bar. To use this you need Microsoft Search configured, then type “work” and press the Tab key to search your company’s network for your work files.
Microsoft Edge security and privacy compared with Chrome
Microsoft also used this week’s announcement to boast about its security and privacy when compared to Google Chrome, citing figures detailed in an NSS Labs report. Describing the increase in phishing scams as a result of COVID-19 and the approaching holiday season, Liat Ben-Zur, corporate vice resident said Microsoft Edge “has your back” and “is more secure than Chrome and Firefox by offering better protection against phishing and malware attacks on Windows 10.”
He also cited privacy features including tracking prevention, InPrivate Search and family safety controls in Microsoft Edge and Bing that “deliver peace of mind when you’re on the web.”
It’s true to say security and privacy on the web are more important than ever, and there is an increasing amount of choice if you want a non-Google browser. Other Chrome alternatives include Firefox and Brave, the latter of which like Edge is based on the same open source Chromium based engine as Chrome, seeing it have access to a lot of the same features.
But Edge is also seeing the importance of privacy and security, and its user experience is pretty good. I’d advise trying it out, especially if you are using other Microsoft services.