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Now’s the Best Time to Try Microsoft’s Chromium-Based Edge Browser

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Microsoft’s speedy Chromium-based Edge browser has been available in both developer and canary builds (not mention leaked versions) for months. Now that the company has officially launched a more stable “beta” channel of the browser, you might want to finally take the plunge and give Edge a try.

The beta is expected to last until the browser’s full release sometime in early 2020. During that time, Microsoft should roll out out major revision updates to the beta build every six weeks, along with smaller patches as needed. This differs from the canary and dev builds, which receive daily and weekly updates, respectively. While the new beta channel build will have fewer experimental features, it should be more stable to use.

Here’s how to opt into the beta program and try out the new Edge browser:

  1. Go to the Edge Insider website.
  2. Click “Download Beta Channel for Windows 10.” For Windows 7, 8, 8.1, and macOS users, click “Other platforms and channels” then scroll down and download the correct version for your OS. (You can also opt into the canary and dev builds from this screen as well.)
  3. Click “Accept and Download.”
  4. Launch MicrosoftEdgeSetupBeta.exe once the download is complete.
  5. Wait for the installer to download and install the necessary files. When complete, the new Edge browser will launch automatically.
  6. From here, follow the onscreen instructions to port over your bookmarks and other data from your other browser(s) and customize the UI.
  7. If you skip the setup but decide you want to import your data later, click the “…” icon in the upper right corner, then go to Settings > Profiles > Import browser data and follow the instructions. Similarly, to change way Edge looks—such as font choice, theme, and menu layout—go to Settings > Appearance.

Unlike some of the previously leaked builds, the beta version of Edge does not replace the non-Chromium version of Edge if it’s installed on your PC, so some Windows users will have both versions of Edge installed simultaneously. You’ll know you’re launching the beta version thanks to the big “BETA” text across the Edge shortcut icon.

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Since your using an early-access version of Edge, you’re bound to run into a few stability issues and bugs. If you’re looking to do a little hacking and increase your bank account in the process, Microsoft has also launched a new bug bounty program for the public beta version of Chromium Edge which could get you up to $15,000 for a reported bug (depending on its severity). There’s also an official Microsoft Edge Insider community forum for posting about smaller bugs and general feedback or troubleshooting.

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