Microsoft announced in late 2018 that it was pivoting from its EdgeHTML browser development to a new Chromium-based alternative. In the same announcement, Microsoft has also revealed that it was already actively contributing to the Chromium project at the time.
With the news that Microsoft had not only made the internal decision to switch from its Edge browsing engineering for Windows 10 but had already been dipping its toes in open source development prior to the decision, it left many wondering when the fruits of Microsoft’s labor would make it to the light of day.
Since its announcement, journalists have been uncovering the extent to which Microsoft has been contributing to Chromium development and the discoveries reveal a relatively extensive list that may be pointing to a preview of the next version of Edge showing up in public soon.
According to Windows Latest, there have been some commit’s on Chromium from Microsoft engineers that include bug notifications for failed DirectX variables and one that addresses upstream local-time related web test to WPT.
On the Google side of things, there is momentum created by Microsoft in the product forums that wants to address accessibility features of Chromium which has been a big push in the latest series of Windows 10 builds.
For its part, Microsoft has stayed relatively mum on when people would get a chance to see the new version of Edge built on Chromium, but stated early on that early 2019 would be the most likely timeframe.
With the years of Chromium development already open sourced and Microsoft’s own efforts chronicled in its Edge on Android and iOS apps, it would seem that its early 2019 timeframe would coincide with its May developer conference in which the company would direct developers to build for that browsing experience instead of the current EdgeHTML branch.
The latest Microsoft-Chromium developments help add credence to the notion that the company should have something in the pipeline for Insiders soon as well as developers at its annual conference in a few months.