As Microsoft Edge (opens in new tab) celebrates its one year anniversary, the revitalized web browser is getting a load of new features including a built-in password monitoring system, a password generator, new themes, and more as part of the Edge 88 update, which is rolling out now.
Microsoft Edge has had one hell of a year since it was rebuilt from the ground up using the Chromium engine - the same platform that powers the world’s most popular web browser, Google Chrome (opens in new tab). We never thought we’d be in a position to say that Microsoft Edge is one of the best web browsers (opens in new tab) out there, but it’s true… and it’s about to get even better with these new additions.
The headline of this update is the increased security features in the form of the password monitor and password generator. The password generator is simple enough - when you’re required to create an account and fill in a new password while browsing in Edge, it will automatically suggest a secure password for you, which it will automatically log in the password manager. Now every time you visit that website and are asked to login, Edge will automatically populate the password field for you if you’re logged into your Microsoft account. This works across all your devices, assuming you're signed in too.
The second part of this password pairing is the password monitor. Password Monitor will periodically run your list of saved login details and passwords against its constantly updated list of leaked passwords. If Edge thinks that your details have been compromised, it will immediately notify you. This is normally a feature reserved for the best internet security software (opens in new tab), so to have it thrown in for free with a free web browser is fantastic. Microsoft has noted that password monitoring may take a few weeks to show up in your Edge browser.
There are some other safety and privacy changes coming to Edge with this update too. You will now have a greater degree of control over specific website permissions, so you can decide which sites have access to your location, webcam, and microphone. There is also a new option in the cookie clearing section that lets you just clear third party cookies, while keeping those essential to your experience on reputable websites.
The long awaited sleeping tabs feature is finally making its public appearance too. Sleeping tabs automatically pulls system resources away from inactive tabs, meaning that your computer won’t grind to a halt when you have too many tabs open at once. Hey, we’re all guilty of it. We have 14 tabs open as we write this piece, so this feature can’t come soon enough.
Finally, there is a nice visual treat for Edge users, as Microsoft has also added a bunch of new themes to the browser. You need to manually download these from the Edge add-ons webpage, but it's a quick and easy process. Xbox gamers will be particularly happy as they’re all based on Microsoft’s most iconic gaming franchises including Halo, Forza, Sea of Thieves, and Microsoft Flight Simulator.