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(Pocket-lint) - Edge is Microsoft's latest internet browser. It's part of the Windows 10 and Windows 11 operating systems and is also available for iPhone and Android devices as well as the Apple Mac and Linux. It also works on the Xbox. 

Edge first debuted in 2015 under the codename Project Spartan and has gone through numerous changes, the most significant of which is the 2020 move to the open-source Chromium platform which Google Chrome is also built upon (known as the Anaheim version of Edge).

Previously Edge used proprietary Microsoft technologies under the hood, but Microsoft decided to make it more compatible with how many web pages were being built.

Edge is now the world's third-most used browser after Google Chrome and Apple Safari. It's neck and neck with Mozilla Firefox with just over 3 percent of the browser market each

Here's what you need to know about Microsoft Edge. 

What's the difference between Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer? 

Microsoft Edge has replaced Internet Explorer (IE) as the default browser on Windows, including laptops, smartphones, tablets, and hybrids. 

Windows 10 still includes Internet Explorer for backwards compatibility, but its icon isn't present on any of the menus - you have to search for it. In Windows 11, Internet Explorer isn't present, but Edge has a compatibility mode if you really do need to see an old fashioned web page or web app in Internet Explorer. For a long time, IE was used as a default for numerous early online systems. 

Microsoft Edge is a universal Windows app, so you can download it and update it from the Microsoft Store on Windows. 

What does the Microsoft Edge logo look like?

Microsoft Edge's original logo was stylised from a lowercase "e" and looks very similar to the Internet Explorer logo. Most Windows users know that clicking an "e" icon will open a web browser, so maintaining that letter and the overall look was designed to reduce confusion. However, the new version of the Edge logo looks like a cross between the IE-style "e" and the Firefox swirl.

What features does Microsoft Edge have?

Microsoft Edge is a lot cleaner in appearance than Internet Explorer and features a combined search and address bar like most modern browsers. All the usual browser accoutrements are in Edge: favorites, reading list, browsing history, and downloads are contained within a sidebar.

Edge also supports Extensions. Other features include an InPrivate mode, online tracker blocking, colour themes, integrated PDF viewer, a browsing mode for kids and Microsoft Defender SmartScreen to protect you from phishing and malware. All your personal bookmarks, passwords and so on are synchronised with your Microsoft Account. 

Why is Microsoft Edge on iOS and Android? 

The idea is that you should have one continuous browsing experience across all your devices. So if you use Edge on Windows, you'll see the same bookmarks and other data on your mobile device.

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Writing by Elyse Betters and Dan Grabham.