Ask Paul: April 5 (Premium)

Happy Friday! I’m in Washington D.C. today for a meeting, and I can see from this week’s questions that readers are wondering about many of the same things I am. Love that.
Chromium-based Edge and EPUB
Dan1986ist asks:

With Microsoft no longer selling ebooks in the Microsoft Store come July, will epub support in Edge (Non-Chromium) be removed, and could Chromium Edge get support for reading epub files?

I am wondering the same thing. And looking at the latest Chromium Edge leak, I can see that it does not support EPUB files at the moment. (It does support PDF, but then so does Chrome/Chromium).

Will it? I have to think so, yes.

But it’s also pretty clear that Chromium Edge, at least at first, will offer a subset of the unique functionality available in today’s Edge, especially at first. And with the first Insider Preview imminent, I think we should adjust or expectations accordingly: The quality will be high overall but those who care about unique Edge features today may have to wait. And some of that may never make it over.
Where to buy/rent movies?
simont asks:

What is a good place to buy/rent movies and TV series online that is cross device compatible? Amazon?

I’ve long advised people to never buy content from Microsoft. I just don’t feel they’re in it for the long term. That said, there are a few caveats.

If you’re renting a movie, it doesn’t matter which service you use. Rentals are temporary, so just rent on the device you’ll be watching on, and use whichever service makes the most sense. If you are going to travel with a Surface Pro, or whatever, and want to watch there, renting from Microsoft Movies & TV is fine.

Purchasing movies is another story. But Microsoft, like other services, calls out movies that are in the Movies Anywhere system. And those movies will sync automatically to other services---iTunes, Amazon Prime Video, Google Play Movies & TV, and others---so they’re a lot less risky.

As for cross-platform compatibility, Amazon and iTunes are the best choices on Windows, since both do at least have a native app that works, if poorly. But your choice will depend on how/where you watch movies, on PC/Mac/whatever, TV (using a smart TV app or set-top box like Roku, Apple TV, and so on), and mobile.

I suspect Amazon will be the preferred choice for many. I happen to buy movies from Apple because they tend to be of higher quality and offer more in the way of special features. I’d say that 2/3 of my collection is cross-compatible thanks to Movies Anywhere. I hope that improves even further in the future.

It’s kind of a personal decision, basically.
Using the Surface Book as a tablet?
staganyi asks:

Surface Book 2 13" used as a tablet. I have a Surface Pro 2 that's getting long in the tooth and would like to replace it with my book 2 for tablet use. I really miss the kick stand and I'm looking for an apple like smart cover that protects the screen which can ...

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