Microsoft revealed this week that it will adopt the new Chromium 4-week release cycle that Google announced for its Chrome web browser last week.
Starting later this year, Microsoft Edge Stable releases will be switched to a 4-week release cycle from a 6-week release cycle. Like Google, Microsoft plans to launch a new edition of its Edge browser for Enterprise customers that will have a 8-week release cycle.
The new Microsoft Edge Extended Stable version will get frequent security updates in the 8-week period but new features and changes will be introduced every 8-weeks when the releases sync up with the regular Stable releases of Microsoft Edge.
To help our enterprise customers looking for an extended timeline to manage updates, Microsoft Edge will offer an Extended Stable option aligned to a longer, 8-week major release cycle; if this option is not selected, the 4-week cadence will be the default experience. Enterprise customers opting for the Extended Stable option will still get all the great innovation and security from the 4-week cycles, just delivered at a more manageable pace. In between major releases, customers choosing the Extended Stable option can expect a biweekly security update with the most important fixes; everything else will be delivered on the extended schedule every eight weeks.
While designed specifically for the Enterprise, Microsoft Edge Extended Stable won't be limited to users in the Enterprise. The new edition of Edge can best be compared to Firefox ESR releases. The main difference between the two is that Firefox ESR is supported for a longer period of time.
Microsoft plans to switch to the faster release cycle when Edge 94 gets released in September 2021. Google revealed that the change will land in the third quarter of 2021, but failed to provide a version of Chrome or a month, when it announced the change last week.
Most browser makers that use Chromium as the base will likely switch to the faster release schedule as well. Some might instead switch to the Stable Extended edition instead, but it is too early to tell at this point in time.
The change may make it more difficult for smaller developers to keep up. Mozilla switched to a 4-week release cycle some time ago as well.
Now You: if you do use a Chromium browser, will you switch to the Extended Stable edition if it becomes available?Advertisement
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.