Believe it or not, Microsoft Edge just became the web’s second most popular browser

While it won’t be set to usurp Google Chrome anytime soon, Microsoft’s Edge browser – the redeveloped program that stepped into the ungainly shoes of Internet Explorer – has hit a new milestone of becoming the web’s second most popular browser, raking in a 7.6% market share thanks to a new report by NetMarketShare.

The news comes shortly after a major endeavour by Microsoft to re-spec and rebuild its Edge browser on the Chromium engine, which is the same framework that powers Google’s Chrome browser. Edge originally launched alongside Windows 10 with a proprietary engine – and while consumers were arguably far happier with Edge’s initial performance, Microsoft could do little to stave off Google’s dominance across the browser landscape.

The revised Edge – which launched late last year – brought a number of new tricks up its sleeve thanks to its Chromium foundation. For example, most plugins that run in Google Chrome are compatible with the new version of Edge.

While there seems to be little stimulation for consumers to actively switch over to Edge from other web browsers to account for its sudden boost in popularity, the advent could be attributed to the fact that consumers are now less willing to switch away from Windows 10’s default browser. That’s added to the fact that while Edge actively encourages users to use Microsoft services such as Bing, Google’s suite remains fully accessible – and thanks to cross-platform availability, Edge can sync across devices such as macOS, Windows 10, Android, and iOS as readily as Chrome can.

The news has seen Firefox- Mozilla’s browser – displaced to become the third-most-popular browser, while other internet staples (such as Safari) continue to trail behind.

What are your thoughts? Have you used Microsoft Edge, and would you be prepared to make it your default browser? Let us know your opinion in the comments below.