Forget Chrome: Edge could soon become the most RAM-friendly browser

Microsoft Edge Browser

Microsoft Edge introduced "double click to close browser tabs" some time ago. It now seems Google Chrome may get this handy feature.

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If the latest Microsoft test is any indication, Microsoft's Edge browser could soon ship with the ability to control its memory usage.

Microsoft Edge Canary, the test version for those who want to try out the latest and upcoming features for the Edge browser, now offers a RAM slider, allowing users to determine how much memory the browser should use at any time. The feature, which was earlier discovered by Leopeva64, a prolific Edge Canary leaker, is available in the Edge Settings pane and appears to allow users to choose between 1GB and their maximum RAM amount for total usage. The setting cautions, however, that "setting a low limit may impact browser speed."

Offering a setting for RAM usage on the Edge browser could be a boon for anyone wanting more control over their browsing experience. While limiting RAM availability can negatively impact browser performance, anyone who uses multiple windows and a slew of tabs in each can tell you that a browser (and user) left to run amok can bog down a computer quite quickly. The RAM slider in Edge Canary doesn't allow that to get out of control and, perhaps most importantly, will let users know when they have too many open tabs that are wasting precious system resources.

Interestingly, the feature also appears to be designed for gamers. In addition to a slider for deciding how much RAM Edge should use, there's also a toggle for users to determine whether the limit on RAM usage should be applied across the entire browsing experience or only when gamers play video games in Edge.

Because of its resource-intensiveness, gaming in the browser tends to use up the most RAM. Giving players the option to limit how much their video games impact system memory should allow the computer to run somewhat smoothly during gameplay and let them switch between apps on older computers, with less memory and, therefore, fewer system resources to go around.

Regarding gaming, Leopeva64 also found that Microsoft has added a new option to let users decide whether Edge should open Game View when switching from a PC-supported game to the browser. If that's toggled on, when users switch from a game to the browser, Game View will automatically show "tips, guides, and other helpful content" related to the game.

Looking ahead, it's unclear when the new Edge Canary features will be available in the Edge browser. But considering most of the features Microsoft brings to Canary are about ready for primetime anyway, it likely won't take long.

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Don Reisinger is CEO and founder of D2 Tech Agency. A communications strategist, consultant, and copywriter, Don has also written for many leading technology and business publications including CNET, Fortune Magazine, The New York Times, Forbes, Computerworld, Digital Trends, TechCrunch and Slashgear. He has also written for Tom's Guide for many years, contributing hundreds of articles on everything from phones to games to streaming and smart home.