The app will feature strong integrations with Windows 10.
Microsoft is finally bringing Windows 10’s desktop web browser to non-Windows smartphones, announcing that Edge is coming to Android and iOS devices for the first time.
Edge users will be able to sync their bookmarks, favourites, reading lists and history across both their PC and their smartphones. The new app also brings features like Reading View and New Tab Page to iOS and Android, and there’s also the ability to open whatever page you’re looking at on your phone to your Windows 10 PC.
Microsoft hasn’t made any claims about the power efficiency of Edge versus rival mobile browsers like Chrome, Firefox and Safari, but the company is bullish about how well the desktop version compares, so it’s possible that switching could net users big gains in battery life. It’s also unknown whether or not the mobile version of Edge will feature integrations with Cortana – something that played a big part in the recent Fall Creators Update.
iOS users can preview the app starting today via Apple TestFlight, and an Android version will be available to test soon – just head here to sign up. The previews will only support US English at launch, but Microsoft says that more languages will be added as time goes on. Some of Edge’s other features, including tablet support and password roaming, will also be added later down the line.
The news marks a further blow for Microsoft’s ailing mobile OS. Windows 10 Mobile has been a continual disappointment for the company, consistently losing money and failing to attract customers. One of the most embarrassing moments came last month, when Microsoft founder Bill Gates revealed that even he has abandoned Windows Mobile.
Rumours have been persistently swirling that Microsoft is planning to axe Windows 10 Mobile altogether, but while this has yet to be officially confirmed, the news that Microsoft is bringing its flagship browser to other platforms suggests that it may be moving in this direction.