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Pivoting to the future with Microsoft Edge

Written By published March 2, 2021

In what feels like an era ago, work was tethered to the office. Fast forward to today—consider work officially untethered. In this once-in-a-lifetime sea change, IT leaders like yourself have the opportunity to rethink your environments, from what security should look like now, down to what new apps your users need. Take one of the most used apps at your organization: the browser.

When we launched Microsoft Edge a little over a year ago, we did so with the conviction that today a browser needs to do more. Microsoft Edge is designed for modern cloud apps and sites, and it seamlessly supports your critical—if older—legacy apps. It can help protect your users and data, even if they’re outside your corporate network. And it can help empower your employees whether they’re at home or back in the office.

Animation showing a site opening in IE mode in Microsoft Edge/

Ready for modern apps—and your legacy ones too

Many IT landscapes today are a snapshot of a decade’s worth of technology—apps developed years ago sit alongside apps recently deployed. We all wish that digital transformation would feel like a great home remodel, but instead, it can look more like a patchwork of modern and retro, to put it kindly. And no wonder: modernizing even a single legacy app costs $335,000 on average1. Multiply that by the number of legacy apps you have, and modernization can be costly and time-consuming.

Modernization though, is not something you can just avoid (nor should you). Eventually, you’ll need to modernize those legacy apps—but you need a solution that lets you dictate your own schedule as you work through the budget, user requirements, and change management associated with it. That solution is Microsoft Edge. It runs on the Chromium open-source project to offer best-in-class compatibility and performance for new apps you deploy. At the same time, Microsoft Edge is the only modern browser with Internet Explorer mode so that you can still use your older, workhorse apps right alongside the new ones.

With support for both modern and legacy apps in Microsoft Edge, compatibility issues should be rare. But if you have any concerns—particularly considering announcements like support ending for Microsoft Edge Legacy on March 9, 2021—just reach out to the App Assure program. They’ve already been helping customers by offering site and app compatibility remediation2. You can reach out for support, or even just advice, through this link or by emailing them at [email protected] at no additional cost.

Adapting to a new security perimeter

In the new world, the security landscape is redefined. Securing apps is as important as securing network infrastructure and using a Zero Trust approach brings security down to the app level. Apps use identity, data permissions, and redundancies to enforce security and Microsoft Edge, with Windows 10 and Microsoft 365, can help you get there.

Microsoft Edge automatically signs in users with Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) accounts and, with built-in support for Azure AD Conditional Access, uses both user and device identity signals to grant access to corporate resources. Microsoft Edge also supports Microsoft Endpoint Data Loss Prevention, which recognizes data classification labels to help prevent data from being inappropriately shared, transferred, or used. And to protect against online threats, Microsoft Edge is best-in-class, with the highest-rated protection against phishing and malware and Application Guard, which runs the browser in an isolated, Windows 10 container. Because of these features, and its support for a Zero Trust approach, Microsoft Edge is more secure than Google Chrome for your business on Windows 10.

Defining the new employee experience

Like security, the apps and tools defining the employee experience need to reflect the new ways of working—browser included. Today, the average employee spends more than an hour a day searching for, or re-creating, information that already exists in their organization—more than triple the time they spent just five years ago3. This is a shadow tax of the Information Age. With Microsoft Search built-in and on by default, employees can intelligently search for internal files, colleagues, or internal resources using the address bar or whenever they open a new tab in the browser. Set a new bar for the employee experience with this essential Microsoft 365 experience that could save each employee up to five to ten days a year4.

Employees don’t just save time while searching in Microsoft Edge—now, they also save time when they start up the browser in Windows 10. Start Up Boost is the latest performance feature in Microsoft Edge and will be on by default in Microsoft Edge version 89. With Start Up Boost, Microsoft Edge starts up 29-41% faster5 after rebooting on Windows 10 so employees can start their day quickly.

Want to give your employees even more of a boost? Check out Sleeping Tabs in Microsoft Edge. Open tabs tend to multiply quickly across the top of browser windows and the more tabs we have open, the slower the browser (and the device) can run. Sleeping Tabs addresses this tab jungle by releasing resources from tabs that have been inactive for a set amount of time to help keep the tabs employees are actively using running faster and more responsive. It’s on by default and can be further configured in your environment using policy.

Ignite 2021 and beyond

We’re excited to connect with customers again at the new March-edition of Microsoft Ignite next week. Check out new videos from the product team this week and subscribe to our YouTube channel so you’re alerted as new content becomes available in the future. You can also ask us questions directly through “Ask the Experts” sessions or opt for 1:1 expert consultations and roundtables. See the schedule below and we hope to see you over the next 48 hours!

Microsoft Ignite sessions featuring Microsoft Edge:

March 2 11:30-11:45 AM PST The heartbeat of modern work: A Windows fireside chat with Panos Panay & Roanne Sones (LINK)
March 2 9:30-9:45 PM PST The heartbeat of modern work: A Windows fireside chat with Panos Panay & Roanne Sones (REPEAT) (LINK)
March 3 4:00-4:30 PM PST Engineer to engineer: Let’s talk Windows! (LINK)
March 4 1:30-2:00 AM PST (Repeat) Engineer to engineer: Let’s talk Windows! (LINK)

Sign up to get your questions answered (some sessions have limited capacity):

March 2 1:00-1:30 PM PST Ask the Expert: Top reasons why customers love Microsoft Edge (LINK)
March 2 4:00-5:00 PM PST Product Roundtable: Give us feedback on security features in Microsoft Edge (LINK)
March 2 11:30-11:59 PM PST Ask the Expert: Top reasons why customers love Microsoft Edge (LINK)
March 3 2:00-3:00 PM PST Product Roundtable: Give us feedback on security features in Microsoft Edge (LINK)
March 3 5:00-5:30 PM PST Ask the Experts: Windows & Devices (LINK)
March 3 11:30-11:59PM PST Ask the Experts: Windows & Devices (LINK)

Sign up for 1 on 1 consultation through FastTrack: Select ‘Microsoft 365’ then ‘Microsoft Edge Deployment’ for available dates and times.

1 Total Economic Impact™ survey conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Microsoft in January 2021
2 If your web apps and sites work in Internet Explorer 11, supported versions of Google Chrome, or Microsoft Edge Legacy, those web apps and sites should work in Microsoft Edge. If not, reach out to App Assure for remediation assistance.
3 Spiceworks/Ziff Davis. Knowledge Sharing in a Changing World. February 2021.
4 Forrester Consulting, The Total Economic Impact of Microsoft Search in Bing April, 2020.
5 Based on internal Microsoft Edge Stable channel results