It feels like Edge is being rushed

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Occasional Contributor

So with the announcement that the new Edge will be generally available in January, some people have noticed that there are still some critical features still missing from the new Edge. At the top of my list of critical features would be extension sync and history sync. I would consider these things very basic features, and as far as I can tell, there is no indication that they will be deployed with the GA release of Edge in January. 

I gotta give Paul Thurrott credit here (https://www.thurrott.com/cloud/web-browsers/microsoft-edge/221502/microsoft-edge-to-launch-without-k...) for pointing out some of these obvious concerns.

 

I'm not sure why Microsoft feels the need to rush this. There is still plenty of work to be done. I tried updating to the latest Dev channel from the previous build on my home laptop, and upon restarting Edge, it started crashing every time I opened it up. The only solution was for me to completely uninstall Edge (along with deleting my profile data because uninstalling it w/o deleting the profile did not fix the issue for me). 

 

There still feels like there is room for improvement on the reliability front and there are still important features missing. 

9 Replies
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@techWiz118 

Talking about latest and previous is not very useful when you don't include version numbers.

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@Bruce Roberts The current Dev channel build: 80.0.320.4. This is the version I updated to that gave me all sorts of trouble with Edge crashing.

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@techWiz118 

Thanks. That interested me because I had a bunch of crashes with 80.0.320.3 (more than with any previous Dev version), but so far it's been solved for me with 80.0.320.4 (fingers crossed).

 

But it's strange that's when it started for you.

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@techWiz118

By the way, (and I thought this when reading Paul Thurrott's comments about Edge being unfinished when released), are extension sync and history sync really "key features"? Didn't we all live without those until fairly recently?

 

 

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@Bruce Roberts I could be wrong, but I think both Chrome and Firefox have had extension and history sync for at least a couple of years. I know I've used those features in both of those browsers in the past year or so and it's really helpful for me if I move PCs or I have to reinstall the browser (and clear the user profile data, which I've had to do at least once for Chrome).  

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@Bruce Roberts You may be dating yourself, inadvertently.

 

Firefox has had history syncing since 2011, eight years ago, in Firefox 4. Chrome has had history syncing since 2013, six years ago, in Chrome 31.

 

With Firefox 4, we’re very excited to be bringing Sync as an integrated feature available right in the browser – no add-on required. Sync enables you to take your bookmarks, passwords, history and open tabs across all of your devices. If you have multiple computers, an Android phone, or an iPhone, Sync will get you up and running with your data in no time.


Chromium Edge launching without a feature that Chrome already offers and Microsoft hasn't replaced yet...is disturbing. I'm not sure why this feature was not prioritized early: this browser is launching in 2020 and the lack of browser syncing is difficult to swallow. That's a certain ding from users who use multiple devices & computers (which I wager is most).

 

Microsoft is unfortunately still learning what Google failed to understand with Allo (now discontinued) and what Microsoft learned with EdgeHTML (old Edge; also now discontinued): you can't launch at 75% completion in a mature market. Any browser today must 1) be as good as the market competition and 2) offer compelling improvements to switch. 

 

The most depressing problem is...there's not much the Edge team can do now. They're already quite late: they need to test syncing between iOS, Android, Windows (7 through 10), MacOS, Windows Server, and Linux soon. That will take ~4 to ~12 weeks to properly QA between all these platforms. Judging from a few problems I've seen with browser sync, this feature might drag into Q3/Q4 of 2020.

 

This is probably the first serious "WTF" moment I've had this year from the dev team. Needless to say, I'm disappointed they've fallen into this trap.

 

EDIT: a quick check shows that Chromium Edge is only launching for businesses in January 2020 and for consumers in "Spring 2020"

 

"Today marks an important milestone as we head to the formal launch of Microsoft Edge and Bing for our commercial customers in January. As we enter the new year, we are excited to share more about how we will expand opportunities for developers, and later in the spring even more for consumers."

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@ikjadoon "EDIT: a quick check shows that Chromium Edge is only launching for businesses in January 2020 and for consumers in "Spring 2020".  "Today marks an important milestone as we head to the formal launch of Microsoft Edge and Bing for our commercial customers in January. As we enter the new year, we are excited to share more about how we will expand opportunities for developers, and later in the spring even more for consumers."

 

Very interesting -- might explain why the Beta on the Enterprise Edge Insiders site is marked "Release Candidate" and the Beta on the consumer Edge Insiders site is not.

 

But other statements from Microsoft suggest that the consumer version of Edge Chromium will release on January 15.

 

For example, the blog "Getting your sites ready for the new Microsoft Edge", Kyle Pflug (Senior PM Lead, Microsoft Edge Developer Experience) and John Jansen, November 4, 2019, clearly suggests that Edge Chromium will be released for both commercial customers and consumers:

 

"This morning, we released Microsoft Edge Beta version 79, which is the final Beta before the new Microsoft Edge is generally available, also known as the “Release Candidate.” On January 15th, we expect to release the “Stable” channel, at which point Microsoft Edge will be generally available to download on Windows and macOS."

 

The link to "Microsoft Edge Beta Version 79" in that blog post is to the Microsoft Edge Insider consumer download site, not the Enterprise Edge Insiders site.  Either the blog post made a mistake and pointed to the wrong Beta, or the consumer Beta is also a Release Candidate, albeit unlabeled.

 

Paul Thurrott quoted another Microsoft statement in his article "New Microsoft Edge to Leave Beta in January", November 4, 2019:

 

We are pleased to announce that the general availability of the all-new Chromium-based Microsoft Edge browser is targeted for January 15, 2020,” Microsoft corporate vice president Jared Spataro announced. “Microsoft Edge is now available across all your devices, including Windows 10, Windows 8x, Windows 7, macOS, iOS, and Android. Your passwords, history, favorites, and settings will roam seamlessly across all your devices, and with native Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) sign-in, you can search for work files right from your phone.

 

It also seems to me that if Microsoft does not intend to release the consumer version in January, it has about another 72 hours to say so, given the widespread reporting in the trade press about a January 15 consumer release.  Otherwise the next round of trade press stories are going to be "Microsoft delays Edge release ...", with all sorts of speculation about why.  Microsoft doesn't need that, given its less-than-stellar history of botched updates in recent months.

 

Microsoft is always interesting, like the Kremlin used to be -- you have to parse and parse and parse to get to the bottom of things.  My guess, though, is that the reference "later in the spring even more for consumers" is about features that will be added to the released version, not about the release date itself.

 

Maybe I'm over-parsing.  We'll see.

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@ikjadoon 

"You may be dating yourself, inadvertently."

 

Yep, thanks. I was out of touch. Just never needed those. 

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I agree it's being rushed.
Edge could use a lot more time being in Beta/Dev/Canary channels.
they could mark at least version 85 as stable, not 79...

it doesn't have so many features, it's even less featured than Edge classic.

I mean like let's say tomorrow Edge stable will release, that doesn't change anything, I won't go use it instead of Canary because I will lose many features.