Extensions have been sorely lacking in Microsoft’s internet browsers but within the last few days the company has doubled efforts in this area. It has added support for a handful of extensions for the Edge browser in the latest Windows 10 preview build and is working on a tool to let developers port Chrome extensions over. Here’s what you need to know.
Three Edge extensions were announced last week: Microsoft Translator, Mouse Gestures and the Reddit Enhancement Suite. Microsoft has promised more extensions and now Turn Off the Lights, an app that fades the background of the browser while videos are playing, has been made available as well. The popular extension is already on Chrome and Firefox. Microsoft has said it is continuing its work with partners to release the first extensions on Windows Store later this year.
As the feature is only available in the Windows 10 preview build 14291 of Microsoft Edge, only those in the Windows Insider program will be able to try out the new extensions. For now, Insiders using build 14291 will have to sideload the extensions (instructions can be found here). Once the extension feature is widely available, they will be downloadable through the Windows Store.
The introduction of extensions will certainly fuel Microsoft’s ambitions to give Edge a competitive edge against Chrome and Firefox. Now we just have to wait for Microsoft’s promised porting tool which will allow developers of Chrome extensions to bring their existing products over to the Edge browser.
[Via Microsoft Edge Dev Blog]