Microsoft Edge (opens in new tab) is finally looking like it’s getting some attention, as the Chromium-based browser is now the second most popular web browser in the world.
The latest figures from NetMarketShare (opens in new tab) show Edge has 7.59% of the web browser market share. That puts it in second place behind Google Chrome, which dominates the market with a 68.5% share, and knocks Mozilla’s Firefox browser into the third position as its share dropped from 9.27% to 7.19%.
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Despite Microsoft presenting Edge as a next-generation browser, it failed to really galvanize interest in it, with Chrome still being one of the first browsers people turn to after booting up a new PC.
But then Microsoft went back to the drawing board and retooled Edge to be a Chromium-based browser (opens in new tab), tapping into the open-source code that underpins Google Chrome, as well as the Opera and Amazon Silk browsers.
Doing this meant people could use the same browser extensions they had in Chrome when switching over to the new Edge. As a result, Edge became a more flexible browser, no longer plagued with the incompatibility issues the old version of Edge had from being built on Microsoft’s own engine. The Chromium-based Edge is also faster than its predecessor was.
Making the move to Chromium appears to have borne fruit for Microsoft, as it has snapped up market share despite being only a few months out of beta. It’s not likely to catch Chrome anytime soon, but then again neither is any other browser.
And there’s a good chance that Edge could have a higher market share if it wasn’t for some 5.6% of people still using Internet Explorer 11, likely due to company IT policy restraints or less savvy Windows 10 users wanting to stick with what they find familiar.
If you’re looking to make the switch from Chrome or Firefox, then the Edge browser now looks like a good bet. On top of supporting Chrome extensions and being faster than before, Edge now finally allows users to drop Microsoft’s own Bing search engine in favor of Google, the most popular and arguably best search engine in the world.