Microsoft pauses Edge releases, following Chrome's lead

Earlier this week, Google announced that it would be pausing new releases for Chrome and Chrome OS, citing the adjusted schedules of the Chrome team during the coronavirus outbreak. Updates, Google said, wouldn't stop entirely, as the team would continue to prioritize security updates as part of Chrome 80. Today, we're seeing Microsoft make a similar announcement concerning upcoming Edge releases.

That shouldn't come as much of a shocker given that Edge is now based on Chromium. On Twitter today, Microsoft said that it will "pause updating the stable channel to Edge 81, consistent with Chromium Project." That mirrors Google's decision to keep Chrome 81 in beta for the time being, rather than promoting it to stable.

Like Google, the Edge team will continue pushing security and stability updates to Edge 80. We don't know what kind of timeline the Edge team has worked out for those updates, but the group says that it will have more to share on that front next week.

This shifted focus could very well last for the duration of the coronavirus outbreak as more Google and Microsoft employees opt to work from home and these massive companies attempt to balance continued product updates with the need to keep employees safe. Just like Google, Microsoft has decided to can planned shows, first announcing that the Game Stack team would be skipping GDC (before that show was cancelled entirely), then later announcing that Microsoft Build 2020 had been cancelled.

We'll see what happens from here, but for now, don't expect to see Edge 81 get promoted to the stable channel anytime soon. We'll let you know when Microsoft shares more about its plans moving forward, so stay tuned for that.