Microsoft Edge on Android and iOS?

Microsoft Edge is a web browser that is exclusively available for Microsoft's new operating system Windows 10. In fact, Edge is the default system browser on the system. While Internet Explorer is still there as well, Edge is promoted left and right while Internet Explorer is kept on mostly for legacy reasons.

Microsoft made it clear back in 2015, when it started to promote Windows 10 more actively, that it had no plans to bring Microsoft Edge to previous versions of Windows or mobile platforms such as Android or iOS.

The company did not say never back then, but that it wanted to put the focus on delivering the best experience on Windows 10 before exploring any other options.

It appears that Microsoft is now at a stage where it is exploring those options.  A recent tweet by Fahad Al-Riyami, technology strategist at Microsoft, asks users on Twitter whether they would like to see Microsoft Edge ported to Android and iOS.

microsoft edge android ios

The current standing, 30 minutes before polls close, is that 85% of all voters want to see Edge ported. The number of voters is relatively small however.

Fahad links to an August 2015 post on Microsoft's Community forum in which the thread starter -- not a Microsoft employee -- asked other users of the forum to tell Microsoft if they wanted to see Edge brought to Android and iOS.

While there is little keeping Edge from being ported to Android, the situation looks different in Apple's ecosystem as it does not allow third-party browsers. While you can create a browser for iOS, they all share Safari's Webkit rendering engine. This would mean that Edge would be a different product on iOS than it would be on Android or Windows 10.

All of this is just exploration for now. Microsoft made no mention of porting Edge to any other operating system, be it mobile or desktop.

Neglecting core Windows customers

I think it is rather interesting that Microsoft seems to have no intention to bring Edge to previous versions of Windows.

Considering that a large part of Microsoft's customer base is still on Windows Vista, 7 and 8, it is not the customer-friendliest of ideas.

Microsoft continues its neglect of -- still supported -- previous versions of the Windows operating system. While there is a good chance that those same customers may run Android or iOS, it is questionable if many would want to install Edge.

Even if you take all the animosities out of the picture, you'd end up with a mobile-only browser since Edge cannot be installed on pre-Windows 10 devices.

This would mean no syncing of data between mobile and desktop versions of the browser.

It would come down mostly to how good Edge is on those mobile devices however. While it is certainly a big improvement over Internet Explorer on the desktop, Edge lacks features currently and the same would probably be true for the mobile version of the browser.

Another issue that Microsoft will face if it ports Edge to Android or iOS is that it won't have an operating system at hand to push Edge to users.

Now You: Would you like to see Microsoft Edge on Android or iOS?

Summary
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Microsoft Edge on Android and iOS?
Description
Microsoft is evaluating possibilities to bring the Microsoft Edge web browser to the mobile operating systems Android and iOS.
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Ghacks Technology News
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Responses to Microsoft Edge on Android and iOS?

  1. anon November 23, 2016 at 5:39 pm #

    >I think it is rather interesting that Microsoft seems to have no intention to bring Edge to previous versions of Windows.
    Windows 7 is out of main support, which means no new features. Windows 8 and 8.1, while supported, were early implementations of WinRT and its UWP so they're not ready for Edge. Furthermore, Microsoft doesn't want to keep supporting multiple versions of Windows, hence their focus on 10, which is the last major release (conspiracy theories aside, it's understandable since it costs a lot of time and thus money, and no one likes to lose money).

  2. Dave November 23, 2016 at 5:46 pm #

    Edge in what sense? Apple doesn't allow alternative rendering engines on iOS, so it might be called Edge, but it'd be a wrapper for Safari like Firefox is.

  3. bwat47 November 23, 2016 at 5:51 pm #

    I'd only use edge if it was on OSX as well. I have a windows gaming pc, a macbook air (running OSX) and an android phone. A browser that can't sync across these is utterly useless to me

    • fire_fox November 23, 2016 at 6:13 pm #

      Firefox allows it

  4. hoytlington November 23, 2016 at 7:51 pm #

    I'd really like to see bookmark syncing between Edge and my iOS devices. But, I wouldn't bother using an alternative browser on an iOS device. There's no point to that.

  5. Paul November 23, 2016 at 10:11 pm #

    "Microsoft Edge on Android and iOS?"

    Who would want that :D

  6. Mike November 24, 2016 at 1:16 pm #

    They need to spend their development dollars and resources to boosting the quality of the desktop app, before going after mobile. Sorry, but the pathetic number of extensions for Edge alone kills a lot of interest I would have in using it.

  7. Robert Smith February 3, 2017 at 8:19 am #

    I would switch from Chrome to Edge in a heartbeat if it was available on Android. The only thing stopping me from using it at all is the fact that it isn't with me wherever I am (phone, PC, etc). Edge is far superior to Chrome in terms of speed and use but it is basically sandboxed to my computer. Chrome has my data and my devices covered so I will stick with it until Microsoft ports Edge to other platforms.

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