Microsoft Edge support of Chrome extensions is a great idea

When it comes down to Microsoft Edge, the web browser has turned out to be something we all want to use but has so far refuse to due to missing features, bugs that seem to never go away, and extensions.

Recently, the company released a new updated to folks in the fast ring of the Insider Preview Build, and this brought to the table a version of Edge with supports for extensions. At the time of writing, only three extensions are available for consumption, and these are Reddit Enhancement Suite, Mouse Gestures, and Microsoft Translate. These are not what most people want to use, but they are good enough for the sake of testing.

MS Edge Extensions

Microsoft Edge support of Chrome extensions

The most important and exciting thing about Edge extensions, however, is the fact that the system supports Google Chrome extensions. This should make it very easy for Chrome extension developers to port their work and make it play nice with Microsoft Edge. Furthermore, any extension created on Edge first should be able to work on Chrome.

This, in truth, is probably the best thing about extensions for Edge. It simply means, we as fans do not have to wait a very long time to have several high quality extensions available for usage. Not to mention, this is a win-win for Chrome and Edge users.

With Microsoft going this route, Firefox could find itself in a tough position. While the popular browser has a strong extension system, it is not supported in other web browsers. Chrome seems to be more versatile because the likes of Vivaldi and the new Opera web browser can all take advantage of extensions made for the Google browser.

If developers are given the choice to create a single extension that can play well with several web browsers, then the need to support Firefox becomes less. This could even force Mozilla to abandon its own extension platform for that of Google’s or follow a similar path Microsoft has taken.

When it comes down to the extensions we’d love to use, well, LastPass is probably the most needed. Furthermore, wouldn’t it be great if Microsoft added the same pop-up blocker mechanism in Edge that is found in Internet Explorer? Let’s be honest here, IE has the most effective pop-up blocker of all web browsers.

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Vamien McKalin possesses the awesome power of walking on water like a boss. He's also a person who enjoys writing about technology, comics, video games, and anything related to the geek world.

9 Comments

  1. Mr. Mobile Performance

    Effectively a web standard for extensions has been created. That’s a good thing.

  2. Inlidoma Moul

    Actually, you should just ditch Edge and use Chrome or Firefox. Microsoft cannot make a good browser, period. The folks at the Roaches Development Center are just not smart enough.

  3. Chris

    Have to agree but, they are clever enough to try dumb us down, no ‘ save as ‘ nice piece of social engineering , wonder if this was done at the behest of some government agency.

  4. Dan

    Yessir, it’s great for me too since extensions most useful to me on my devices are most often found in Chrome only…I use Edge (and IE11, Chrome, FF, Linux/Midori, yadda) often enough and especially if other browsers get a site saying “sorry…can’t load/understand something here”…Edge is as good as IE for getting expected site loads/usage. What few things Edge can’t do from context menu just jump into another browser and take it from there. Cheers!

  5. Concerned Reader

    Your second last paragraph wrote about Mozilla abandoning its own add-on platform is worrisome.

    People who understand their right to freedom don’t want to see an united extension platform owned by Google or any one corporate entity. Monopoly may be bad for end-users.

    Having another active add-on/extension platform is a good thing, if one day Google changes something in the Chrome Web Store that affects our privacy or upsets us in general, at least we have another option.

  6. George Hunt

    True. Everything in this article was kinda informative and pleasant until i saw that statement, it sucks, why would the writer want that? Convenience was probably the only thing in his mind.

  7. Mr. Mobile Performance

    It would no different from Microsoft Word being the de facto standard for documents. Open Office and Libre Office are still possible, and a basic Word document is universally compatible. I don’t see the problem with a de facto standard for browser extensions. Quite the contrary, we want all our browsers to be standards compliant.

  8. There is nothing wrong with a standard, if a browser didn’t want google to have all the control of extensions in their than they could either make another extension store* where they have different policies than Google’s and/or make it easier to sideload extensions allowing them to use the already vast amount of extensions available while have some control (in their own store*) at least.

    * The term “store” is meant as any site where you can download extensions regardless of price (i.e. https://chrome.google.com/webstore/category/apps or https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/ )

  9. Robert Shuste

    Here we are closing in on the Edge of March and still no extensions for Microsoft Edge. Am I surprised? No, I am not. Since the release of Windows 10 back at the end of July 2015, we’ve been promised Extensions and strangely enough, some are believing it.
    People, if Microsoft were serious about their Browser, they’d had extensions in it when Windows 10 was dropped into the public. The point is and obvious is, they are not. I agree with another, we’ll be hearing about the promise of extensions next year this time and they will not be here. Consequently we use Chrome and Microsoft very apparently does not care less. Thus their little or no serious effort in putting something as simple as an extension into their new Browser. And they will not.

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