5 reasons Microsoft Edge is the best browser

Microsoft Edge may not have the most market share, but it certainly makes a case for being the best browser out there.

Microsoft Edge may not be the top browser in terms of market share right now, but the Redmond tech firm continually adds new features to it in order to retain its existing customers and attract new ones. Edge has had to face an uphill battle from the start because of the poor reputation of Internet Explorer in the past decade or so, its pivot to Chromium, and the fact that Chrome commands a significant majority in terms of user base, so any competitor really needs to have unique or well-polished features to entice people to completely switch from their existing browser.



Fortunately, Microsoft Edge has a bunch of handy features that make it a very compelling option for those wanting to try a new browser on their laptop. Let’s take a look at some of my favorites.

1 Bing Chat integration

Although you can access Microsoft’s Bing Chat by visiting Bing directly through Edge — other browsers are currently being tested too — it’s become evident that the Redmond tech firm wants its chatbot to be your copilot while using all of its software, including Teams, Outlook, and even Edge. The latest releases of Edge host a dedicated button with the Bing icon in the menu bar, clicking on it opens Bing Chat directly in a side panel. You don’t need to navigate to any other website, just engage in a conversation directly from your current tab.

The real benefit of this implementation comes from the convenience itself. You don’t need to download any extension, you don’t need to visit Bing through a URL, you can just click the Bing Chat button at any time and ask questions if you are stumped at something. It’s a very handy capability to have which sets it apart from other browsers. Chrome is still in the relatively early stages of trialing Bard and does not seem confident enough to integrate it directly into Chrome while some other browsers like Vivaldi are spoofing the User-Agent string just to access the chatbot when visiting Bing, which is not a very refined implementation.

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2 Immersive Reader

Immersive Reader is probably one of the best capabilities built-in in Microsoft Edge. In a nutshell, you can select the option from the address bar on any webpage and have it open in a distraction-free mode of sorts with fewer and better-formatted images, no advertisements, and various configurations to modify the appearance of the page. When it comes to the latter, you can change the page theme, text size, spacing, font, alignment, and highlight various grammatical notation like nouns, verbs, adverbs, and adjectives.

Apart from offering these nifty customization options, Immersive Reader also acts as an accessibility tool as it offers a “Read aloud” feature for a narrator to take over with words being highlighted as the text as being read. It also has a built-in translator and even a “picture dictionary” where if you hover over certain words, you’ll see a visual representation of it. Immersive Reader makes it really easy to read, listen to, and understand text at pace and the fact that it’s a native tool that offers so many customization options sets it apart from the pack.

3 Web capture

Web capture in Microsoft Edge does exactly what it says on the tin. It’s a collection of tools that offers a convenient way to essentially take a screenshot of your browser window (with scrolling capabilities!) and then do various activities with it. There are three utilities in tow, the first is Capture area enables you to take drag your cursor across the window and then either copy the text, mark it up, and save it. Meanwhile, Capture full page takes a screenshot of the whole window with markup capabilities, and finally, Web select lets users drag their cursor across the screen to capture a portion of it, but rather than copy it as an image, it grabs the elements from the page as text, and it can even keep proper formatting like tables.

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All of these functionalities have different use-cases but definitely come in handy when you want to take and mark up screenshots of your browser window on the fly instead of launching dedicated and external software like Snipping Tool.

4 Tracking prevention

There’s been an increasing emphasis on privacy over the past few years with mounting public pressure over the need for software that does not fingerprint your online activities and sell that data to advertisers for personalized recommendations. Many companies which collect your personal data are building privacy-preserving mechanisms that attempt to protect your privacy to some extent while still ensuring that their business model remains viable. However, Edge makes it very easy to block tracking from advertisers through a feature called “Tracking prevention”.

This feature offers three configurations in the form of Basic, Balanced, and Strict. The first option allows almost all trackers across any websites you visit which means that you’ll be served more personalized ads, Balanced is the recommended option which blocks trackers and cookies from sites you haven’t visited yet, so you’ll be served fewer personalized ads, and finally, Strict blocks pretty much all trackers, but it runs the risk of breaking parts of the websites you visit. There are also separate sections to see the list of blocked trackers and configure exceptions to allow all trackers on certain websites.

Tracking prevention is a great feature for privacy-conscious customers who want to visit their favorite websites without worrying about cookie collection and trackers monitoring all their activities.

5 Split screen

Split screen is a very convenient method to have two browser tabs visible at the same time without having them split into a separate window. You can enable Split screen by clicking on the icon in Edge’s menu bar, which sections off your browser window into two areas. This enables users to view related content in the second window or even segregate their workflows completely inside the same tab. The sections can be resized so that you can prioritize them as primary and secondary views too.

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There are other features that you can leverage with Split screen. For example, you can link the two tabs in such a way that if you click a link in the first tab, it opens in the second, which can be a great way to boost productivity and enable multitasking. Similarly, you can also swap the tabs based on your preference.

While similar functionality can be replicated using Windows 11’s snap layouts, that requires separate instances of the browser open. Instead, having this capability baked into Edge is much more convenient. There is room for improvement here though: you can’t open more than two tabs in the Split screen view, so maybe this is something Microsoft can work on next, provided that there is enough demand for it.

Is Microsoft Edge the best web browser?

Microsoft Edge is a very capable web browser with a lot of added bells and whistles that are not offered by competitors. Of course, some people may refer to this as bloat and want to have their web browser implement only the essential functionalities and be as lean as possible, but there is no harm in having optional, extra functionalities that you can leverage as needed. At the end of day, your particular needs determine which browser best suits your needs, but with all of its features, Edge certainly makes a case for being the top contender, despite its low market share.

Categories: Reviews
Source: thptvinhthang.edu.vn