Microsoft Edge 94 is out with new 4-week release cycle and 'Extended Stable' channel option

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Microsoft Edge 94 is now available in the Stable channel, and this release marks the switch from a 6-week to a 4-week release cycle. Microsoft explained back in March that this faster release cycle would bring new features to Edge users more frequently, but the company is also offering a new 8-week "Extended Stable" release cycle option for enterprise users with a biweekly security update.

To opt in to the 8-week “Extended Stable" release cycle option, IT Admins will need to use a Group Policy or select the new channel option via Intune in Microsoft Endpoint Manager. "The 8-week “Extended Stable” release cycle option for Microsoft Edge Stable will deliver cumulative feature updates aligned with even-numbered releases beginning with Microsoft Edge 94; any feature updates from odd-numbered releases will be packaged up and delivered as part of the subsequent even-numbered release," the company explained.

Diagram showing incremental stable releases every four weeks, and even-numbered extended stable releases every eight weeks.

Microsoft Edge 94 is a pretty minor release with security improvements and a new accessibility settings page. You can find the list of changes below:

  • Improvements to default behavior of opening MHTML files. MHTML files will continue to open in IE mode if IE mode is enabled, unless the MHTML file was saved from Microsoft Edge (using the Save As or Save Page As options in Microsoft Edge). If the file was saved from Microsoft Edge, it will now open in Microsoft Edge. This change will fix a rendering issue that was observed when opening an MHTML file in IE mode when saved from Microsoft Edge.
  • Restrict private network requests to secure contexts. Access to resources on local (intranet) networks from pages on the internet requires that those pages be delivered over HTTPS. This change is happening in the Chromium project, on which Microsoft Edge is based. For more information, navigate to the Chrome Platform Status entry. Two compatibility policies are available to support scenarios that need to preserve compatibility with non-secure pages: InsecurePrivateNetworkRequestAllowed and InsecurePrivateNetworkRequestAllowedForUrls.
  • Block mixed content downloads. Secure pages will only download files hosted on other secure pages, and downloads hosted on non-secure (non-HTTPS) pages will be blocked if initiated from a secure page. This change is happening in the Chromium project, on which Microsoft Edge is based. For more information, navigate to the Google security blog entry.
  • Enable implicit sign-in for on-premises accounts. By enabling the OnlyOnPremisesImplicitSigninEnabled policy, only on-premises accounts will be enabled for implicit sign-in. Microsoft Edge won't attempt to implicitly sign in to MSA or AAD accounts. Upgrade from on-premises accounts to AAD accounts will be stopped as well.
  • New accessibility settings page. We have brought accessibility-related settings together on a single page. You can find the new edge://settings/accessibility page under the main settings list. Here you can find settings to make the web page bigger, show a high visibility outline around the area of focus and other settings that can help improve your web browsing experience. We’ll continue to add new settings here in future versions of Microsoft Edge.

As Microsoft Edge updates now follow Chromium updates, Google Chrome is also moving to a 4-week release cycle starting with Chrome 94 released earlier this week. Just like Microsoft, Google has also started offering a new extended channel option for its Chrome browser on Windows and macOS.

In case you missed it yesterday, the new Chromium-based Edge also landed on Xbox consoles with the September OS update for Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S. This new version of Edge works just like the desktop version of Edge and supports sync and mouse input on Xbox consoles, though Edge extensions are currently not available.

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