Surprise! Microsoft Edge is Coming to Android and iOS

Posted on October 5, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Android, iOS, Mobile, Windows 10 with 68 Comments

Microsoft announced this morning that it is bringing its Microsoft Edge web browser to Android and iOS. And in a related move, the Arrow Launcher app for Android is “graduating” and getting a new name: Microsoft Arrow. Both apps are part of the firm’s efforts to make it easy to move what you’re working on between your phone and PC.

“One of the most common requests we hear from people who use Microsoft Edge on Windows 10 PCs is ‘we want our browser experience to move to our phones’,” Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore writes. “You spoke, we listened.”

And to be clear, Microsoft Edge for Android and iOS is about that “browser experience,” is about bringing the features from the Windows 10 web browser to mobile, and not about the rendering engine or the underlying technology. So you’ll get familiar Edge features like Favorites, Reading List, New Tab Page, and Reading View, plus automatic “Continue on PC” functionality. Over time, more features, like roaming passwords, will come to the apps as well.

For the short term, however, availability and functionality will be limited. If you’re on iOS, you can access the first preview version of Microsoft Edge today. But the Android version is coming soon.

Language support is US English only for now, but Microsoft promises to “ramp to other countries/languages” as it expands the preview. And some features, like roaming passwords, will not be available immediately.

What is available immediately is the new Microsoft Launcher app for Android, which is a replacement for Arrow Launcher. This version has been updated with the Fluent Design System, and it lets you pin your favorite people to the home screen, just as you can do with Start in Windows 10.

“Microsoft Launcher represents the ‘graduation’ of the 4.6-star rated Arrow Launcher project that was developed in our Garage,” Mr. Belfiore explains. “We’re making a big update to Arrow and changing its name. Everyone on the Arrow Launcher beta will automatically get the Microsoft Launcher today, and any other Android users can join the preview of Microsoft Launcher beginning today as well.”

Exciting stuff. I’ll try to look at both of these in more detail as soon as possible.

Sign-up to get Microsoft Edge preview on iOS here.

Sign-up to be notified when Microsoft Edge preview on Android is available.

 

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Comments (72)

72 responses to “Surprise! Microsoft Edge is Coming to Android and iOS”

  1. ben55124

    Great - a browser that uses the native rendering engine, offers the edge "chrome", and no extensions. So who are these vocal Edge "people" and what can windows phone, media center, zune, etc fans learn from them?

  2. rmlounsbury

    I just got done listening to last weeks Windows Weekly and couldn't help but chuckle seeing this story after I just got done hearing Paul say it would never happen.


    I think it is great to have more options in the market and not always have to default to the built in browser on Android or iOS. It is awesome for folks that use Windows 10 for their desktop/laptop and want to take advantage of Edge on all their devices.


    I was going to sing up for the beta but was a bit sad to see that Microsoft has locked it down to Windows Insiders with the current release insider build installed on their device. Not sure I want to commit to having insider builders on my device just to get access to the Edge beta which is a 50/50 shot as to whether or not I'd use it regularly.


    I guess I'll have to use Edge as my daily driver for a little while and see if I like the current iteration or not before jumping back onto insider builds.

  3. Ron Diaz

    Carole King Lyrics


    "It's Too Late"


    Stayed in bed all morning just to pass the time

    There's something wrong here, there can be no denying

    One of us is changing, or maybe we've just stopped trying


    And it's too late, baby, now it's too late

    Though we really did try to make it

    Something inside has died and I can't hide

    And I just can't fake it, Oh no no


    It used to be so easy living here with you

    You were light and breezy and I knew just what to do

    Now you look so unhappy, and I feel like a fool


    And it's too late, baby, now it's too late

    Though we really did try to make it

    Something inside has died and I can't hide

    And I just can't fake it, oh no no


    There'll be good times again for me and you

    But we just can't stay together, don't you feel it too

    Still I'm glad for what we had, and how I once loved you


    But it's too late, baby, now it's too late

    Though we really did try to make it

    Something inside has died and I can't hide 

    And I just can't fake it, Oh no no no no no


    It's too late

    Baby

    It's too late

    Now darling

    It's too late


  4. bgoodbody

    Waiting for eMail about Edge for Android. BEWARE: NN MS Edge app is available

  5. Tony Barrett

    Ha! Sure thing Joe. Yeah, I genuinely believe that MS are being asked to move Edge to iOS and Android. Not. This is the same 'Edge' that has about 5% browser market share. The same Edge that 'integral to Windows 10' and can't be run anywhere else. So, what your really saying here is, "we screwed up our own mobile platform, now what's left is to try and salvage some mobile presence by making our products available for other platforms".

    What next, Edge for Windows 7!

  6. Winner

    Well that's going to speed up the evolution of Edge on Win 10, since now they need to evolve it on 3 platforms...

  7. dstrauss

    Good luck to them, but I'd venture most of us have already moved (or were in) to Chrome as a cross-platform solution - I can have a Windows desktop, iPhone, and Android tablet, if I want.

    • ChristopherCollins

      In reply to dstrauss:

      Correct... I have tried Edge so many different times that I got sick of it. Mobile sync seemed like it was never coming and I (like many others just gave up). It would have been smarter to have kept IE going and debuted a FULL featured Edge with mobile sync at the end of this year that really rivaled Chrome.


      You can only make one first impression. Anyone who chose Microsoft is losing music and slowly everything consumer. If you went iPhone/Macbook with a VM of Windows for those few moments you need it, you have password sync, history, continue on mobile or pc already in Safari... You also have consumer products that will stick around. Google, with their latest announcement has a product for all occasions and it seems that Chromebook is really about to get features rapidly to compete better with Windows.


      I tried Edge again on every beta. I gave up when they messed up Cast To DLNA in Edge. We are MS geeks, though. No normal consumer will try Edge with each build. Too late for this gesture.


  8. sott3

    Now I can avoid using Edge on all my devices!

  9. Daekar

    Been hoping for this since Windows 10 came out. Will switch as soon as practical!


    One of the premium folks was saying they wanted to see a Windows themed launcher from Microsoft, and I thought I'd mention the SquareHome 2 Launcher. It is very customizable and can be made to look just like Windows Phone if you want, or more like a Start Menu, or with transparent glass tiles... It's pretty darn neat. You can also set different functions for press vs press and hold... So clicking on my phone app opens then app and a long press calls my wife, for example.

  10. marcosbabu

    So, Mr. Belfiore is back? Good to hear. His passion was endearing.

  11. Pargon

    So this is 2 weeks from the Creator's Update round 2....when supposedly MSFT would finally update edge through the store. Seems maybe that's true. Same reasons given for not updating through the store were given for why no cross platform support. That's exciting, maybe Edge will finally get some slope to it's "s-curve" development and rapidly iterate!

    • gregsedwards

      In reply to Pargon:

      I attended an Ignite session on under-the-hood improvements being made to Edge in the FCU, and I'm convinced the development team is building a top-notch browser that competes on all web performance benchmarks. Edge has an extremely efficient rendering engine. What it needs is an engaged user base.

  12. chevypad

    And then there's Samsung's Internet Beta, which has an invert-colors "Night Mode", plugins including ad-blockers, password access via biometrics, a quick-access floating button for sharing and new tabs, and a useful (but unreliably available depending on the site) reading mode/reading list. Which uses a Chrome Plugin to sync bookmarks.


    If I'm going to be a user on Android who does not use Chrome, they make a far more compelling argument than Edge. All of their unique "gimmick" features can improve quality of web browsing...

  13. sharpsone

    I'm eager to test this on Android. I've been using firefox, but on W10 I use Edge. Hope the wait isn't too long i'd like the ability to sync my browser across PC and Phone with a MS product.

  14. VancouverNinja

    Simply awesome!! Just finished setting this up on my iPhone and the continue on PC feature works so well! Totally prefer the interface over Safari's, it just seems cleaner and more modern. I can't see how this does not end up being a runaway success for anyone how works on PC's or just wants a nicer browser experience.

  15. Wizzwith

    So this certainly makes them selling books in the Windows(->Microsoft) Store a whole lot more interesting.  I'm sure it'll still barely be used, and baffling why they even bothered, but I'm guessing it just doesn't cost much of anything to have it there.  Would actually consider technical books through them now though; get the benefit of markup on pen enabled Windows and now could read them across any iOS/Android device as well.  Novels will always be on my Kindle (e-ink) reader though. 

  16. kjb434

    This is will make Android worth it. Lumia 1520 in my hands is knocking on death's door. Edge syncing across phone and PC will be worth it.

  17. haizelmaeem

    Do you need an extra income? Search the website SuperiorTrading System. The people there are good and approachable. They will help you learn how totrade.

  18. polymath

    Edge, Chrome, Firefox all built to do progressive apps and webasm..


    in a year or two most of the world will be using browser based internet and internet based applications .


    Edge on ,,, android, ios, Microsoft ( ARM x86 machines coming.. with windows ) all ways on 4G LTE. in the form of "phones" in inverted comers, Tablets, convertibles, 360 laptops etc,,


    we are in a transition from the old tower/laptop into modern fan less micro technology supported by the cloud using all ways connected internet

  19. Waethorn

    So does this mean that Microsoft will start pushing this onto Samsung due to their preloading of Microsoft apps already?

  20. Kadren

    With all the recent news, i can't help but see the desperation in every action Microsoft takes. I mean, Edge, the browser so unpopular it can now be officially replaced as the default one, is getting ported. With the recent track record of Windows failing to maintain its streaming services or the continuing rise and evolution of online services like Instagram requiring more and more prowess from browsers, it's only a mattter of time when Windows becomes the wors system for online access, and than it will be the death of it.

  21. wolters

    I've been waiting on this. I didn't think it would be possible but so glad to hear this. I don't mind Chrome but I liked Edge better, at least with the smooth scrolling and it just looked better. I moved to Chrome once I had to leave Windows Phone and go to Android. This is quite exciting.

  22. LocalPCGuy

    My first thought was that this was a joke post. It's not, which makes it really good news.

  23. Bats

    Now, Edge has a shot of survival!

    MSFT needed for this to happen. This wasn't a smart decision. It was the obvious one. I called for this months ago. This should tremendously ease users out of Windows Phone and into Android or iOS. THE BEST CHOICE IS ANDROID, though.

  24. skramer49

    Just what we need: another mobile browser. especially from a company who has apparently abandoned the mobile market and seems to be moving away from individual consumers towards enterprise.

    • Ukumio

      In reply to skramer49:

      Microsoft moved away from Windows Mobile because no one but hardcore fans were buying the phones, but ever since Satya Nadella took over, no one can doubt that Microsoft has been invested in having their services on mobile, with some W10M even complaining that Microsoft was prioritizing other platforms over their own.


      The new Microsoft seems to be more likely to get rid of products that are just not working or gaining an audience, but as we move to an ever more mobile centric world i think we'll continue to see Microsoft focus on putting their successful services in that space.

  25. JacobTheDev

    This makes using Edge a lot more interesting; the main reason I use Chrome is because it syncs so well between devices. Definitely going to give it a shot. If extensions end up coming to the Android version, that pretty much puts it over-the-top for me.

  26. glenn8878

    Surprise! In a “Here’s Johnny!!!” way.

  27. ianceicys

    This idea of 'edge' on ios/chrome are nearly useless. Password syncing come-on. The rebranding of the arrow launcher is nice...but Edge as a web rendering engine and platform is and has been for the last 2 years DOA. Don't expect web developers to target edge, but rather they with instead target Chrome and Webkit via Safari. Microsoft should just abandon the entire web rendering engine behind edge.

  28. mocavo67

    So if we can dual boot a PC to run Windows and MAC why can't we dual boot a phone to run android or windows mobile. It seems to me that Microsoft being a "software" company and getting out of hardware would simply use their powers to do just that.

    • jimchamplin

      In reply to mocavo67:

      One word: Google :(


      Pretty sure they'll pull Google Play services if you do that. Ya know? How Microsoft used to strongarm companies, but now nobody's going to say or do anything.

    • hrlngrv

      In reply to mocavo67:

      Maybe because it's not as easy to handle dual booting on a phone or do much at all with phone OSes.

      Could phones use something like grub or are phone boot loaders baked into firmware and can only boot specific phone OSes. Also, when things go wrong on PCs, it's possible to boot from usb drives to fix things on internal drives. Can phones boot from external media?

  29. dontbe evil

    ok now we need photos, maps and films&tv

  30. Nic

    Because it wasn't bad enough to just have Edge on Windows...

  31. harmjr

    Wish Microsoft would release a Windows 10 mobile theme for Android for UI.

  32. jimchamplin

    Already joined the Test Flight.

  33. JerryH

    Getting closer to Chrome. Unfortunately not roaming stored passwords yet is still a blocker. As we get closer to something usable I now realize it still won't replace Chrome because the roaming of anything (visited sites is the killer for me but some folks need favorites, etc.) is going to be tied to my MS account. Which means it can roam between my Android phone, Android tablet, and home PC. But, it still isn't going to roam to my work PC where MS accounts are not allowed. Chrome on the other hand you just sign in (in the app) to your Google account. But on Windows I don't think you can "sign in" to a MS account in Edge. I think you have to have that account added to Windows which isn't allowed here. Hmm. Getting closer though.

  34. Plumbobby

    Oh thank God. The way all normal people love Chrome and sing it's praises... I think I may be the only person who uses "Reading Mode" constantly. I can't stand not having it, now that I'm used to it. I seriously can't wait to be able to use Edge and read sites in an optimized setting with ads removed again! I hope they give an option to have the search bar at the bottom of the screen like the old days lol.

  35. gregsedwards

    If you watch last week's Windows Weekly from Ignite, there was this crazy guy asking a very similar question around the 1 hr 30 min mark. It would seem you owe this fellow a beer. ?


    Or at least a crisp high five. ✋

  36. Chris Hedlund

    I guess this means Microsoft will allow Chrome on Windows 10 S...

  37. mmcpher

    Another Edge on Android update today! I hope it resolves 2 issues I have so far: 1) using the Note 8 S Pen to input text is glitchy; and more importantly, 2) Lastpass is also glitchy when I use Edge. What happens is at whichever site where I use my email address as a username, when I navigate to it, LP assumes I am looking for email password rather than the website password. When I search LP and find the site entry and try to select it, it brings me to some odd search page.


    But it a real pleasure to have Reading Mode and I also love "Continue on PC". Getting Mobile Edge only re-enforces my strong preference for Edge over Chrome. It is painful to have to go back to Chrome whenever I am on our old Windows 7 PC through Terminal Server.

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