Microsoft is working on a multi-device virtual web browser [Patent]

Is Microsoft planning to ditch Edge or significantly upgrade it?

by Flavius Floare

Flavius Floare

Flavius is a writer and a media content producer with a particular interest in technology, gaming, media, film and storytelling. He enjoys spending time in nature and at… read more

virtual web browser microsoft

Microsoft recently released a patent for a technology describing a virtual web browser capable of running on any device. According to the patent, now available to the public, this is not the first time Microsoft has dabbled with the concept. In fact, the patent is based on inventions from 2021, 2017, and 2012.

However, since cloud technologies are far more advanced, this might finally be a good time to develop and release a virtual web browser. But what is it one, anyway? Well, a virtual browser is a cloud-based browser that allows users to access the internet on devices that wouldn’t properly run it in the first place. Think about being able to run a virtual browser on a smartwatch.

In many ways, a virtual browser is similar in concept to cloud gaming. If we take, for example, the now-defunct Stadia, the platform made users capable of running demanding video games on browsers such as Chrome. A virtual browser works similarly, more or less.

Microsoft’s virtual web browser: How would it work?

  1. The system uses a virtual browser located on a proxy server. This virtual browser does all the heavy lifting – retrieves, renders, and encodes web pages for all devices.
  2. The devices themselves only need to be able to decode and display the web pages. They don’t need to have their own web browsers or be able to handle user inputs.virtual web browser microsoft
  3. The system also includes a touch controller that can be a remote control for devices with limited or no user input capabilities.

The method would also allow for seamless web browsing across multiple devices, even when those devices aren’t designed to support web browsing.

Could this be a future iteration of Microsoft Edge? Or will Microsoft come with an entirely new browsing experience?

It seems that multi-device experiences are becoming more popular these days, and it’s only a matter of time until they become the standard. Samsung has its own Galaxy Connected Experience, and according to a document leaked to us by close sources, Qualcomm will also debut a similar service called Snapdragon Seamless.

These multi-device experiences allow a task to be started on one device and then continued on another, different from the first. The experience allows for greater mobility and doesn’t stop productivity, no matter where a user is.

So why shouldn’t browsing the internet also become a multi-device experience? The technology described in the patent definitely points it out.

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