With the introduction of the Windows 10 operating system in 2015, Microsoft announced the all-new Microsoft Edge browser with its EdgeHTML rendering engine. Even after three years of continuous improvement, the browser has not received an enthusiastic response from users and developers. In 2019, the software giant finally gave up and decided to join the Chromium Web engine project to rebuild its browser. At the same time, a privacy-oriented browser called Brave has announced its arrival on desktop platforms, including Windows and macOS.
The two browsers aim to grab the precious cake from the market leader, Google Chrome. However, their approach is completely different. Microsoft is focused on leveraging Windows 10 integration with better support for scrolling and gestures. Brave relies on its superior privacy add-ons to integrate new users.
In this article, we will compare the two web browsers on different fronts, including user interface, features, plugin support, password manager, cross platform availability, etc. Let’s start.
Brave has a slight advantage over Microsoft. The browser is available on iOS, Android, Windows, Mac and even Linux. Microsoft Edge is available on iOS, Android, Mac and Windows. There is no Linux support yet, but Microsoft plans to bring it in the future.
User interface and customization options
I enjoyed the old user interface of Microsoft Edge. And it’s pretty disappointing that Microsoft hasn’t carried it over to the new Chrome-based browser. This novelty with the acrylic effect has disappeared. The application uses the standard Chromium user interface. It’s a bit like the Google Chrome browser.
Microsoft Edge also supports the dark theme in the settings. However, it will not respect the dark theme of Windows 10.
Brave is similar to Microsoft Edge here. Nothing major compared to Google Chrome. However, the Settings menu is better organized and looks pretty good. The application also respects Windows 10 Dark Mode. I noticed a good use of the iconography in the user interface. The reload, return, advance, bookmark and other icons are great.
Microsoft Edge offers one of the best default home screens with a limitation. By default, it is set to Inspirational, which presents Bing search, the most used applications and a nice wallpaper. You can change it to Informational to bring Bing News integration, or if you like a minimalist look, select a targeted home. The only sad part is that there is no way to set Google as the default search engine.
Brave’s default home is for Brave’s privacy efforts. Its design presents relevant information such as background image, clock, Brave statistics, best sites and Brave awards. There is no unnecessary news integration. You can also change the search engine to Bing, DuckDuckGo, StartPage or Qwant.
Performance and functionality
Previously, with the EdgeHTML rendering engine, Microsoft Edge suffered from rendering performance issues with many websites. With the transition to Chromium, the rendering problem is no longer. It works as expected. I also found that scrolling was better on the new Microsoft browser. The company is agrees to improve the default Chromium code, so all Chromium browsers will eventually get benefits.
The Edge Chromium offers an excellent reading mode. Tap the play icon in the address bar and delete unnecessary items. You can change the font style, text size, reading theme, etc.
Brave handled the little details very well. For example, when you mouse over a tap, it will display the web address for that tab. The company offers courageous rewards. The program features brave ads based on your location and interests and you can earn up to $ 5 a month.
It can also be defined to automatically contribute. Brave will bring your rewards to your favorite publishers and content creators. Regarding performance, I don’t see any major discrepancies or performance issues during my limited test time. Unfortunately, the reading mode is absent from Brave. It’s essential these days.
Microsoft Edge and Brave browsers both offer to save passwords. You can synchronize them and access information on each device.
Brave offers a Crypto wallet. You can store and manage cryptocurrencies in the browser and view the wallet on each device.
Support for extensions and privacy
One of the possible reasons why the original Microsoft Edge didn’t take off was the lack of extension support. With the new Edge Chromium, it has had access to thousands of extensions over there. However, you will not be able to find them in the app. You must visit the Chrome web store, authorize permission to download the extension from the third-party store, and then install them on the browser.
In terms of security, Microsoft has enabled balanced tracking protection in settings. It blocks social trackers, ads and harmful trackers.
To download extensions to Brave, go to Settings> Extensions> Get more extensions, and this will open the Chrome online store. Download and install the relevant products from the store.
Brave emphasizes its security and privacy functions. The browser protects the protection of each site and blocks site trackers, autoplay videos, and cross-site device trackers. However, it will not block ads. You can view the blocked data live and the estimated time saved on the home screen.
Which you should use
With the redesigned Edge Chromium call, it’s hard to recommend one of the two. Microsoft Edge has read mode, better scrolling, and full support for Chrome extensions. Brave offers more features like Crypto wallet, Brave rewards and Shield protection with live data. So it’s up to you to choose the best browser from these two. Alternatively, I suggest you install both and try them out individually.
Thinking about switching from Google Chrome to Microsoft Edge browser? Read the detailed comparison below to make the perfect decision.
Last updated March 29, 2020