Google, Microsoft want to fix browser compatibility for good

(Image credit: Huawei)

A new cross-company effort is working towards improving the compatibility across different web browsers.

The Compat2021 campiagn is headed by Google and Microsoft together with Spanish open source development company Igalia, who will work with the “broader web community” and pool resources to improve the five critical areas the group has identified.

However, despite its grandiose aims, the effort appears to be centered on improving the open source Chromium engine that powers Google Chrome as well as Microsoft’s new Edge web browsers.

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Division of labor

The effort flows from the feedback to initiatives such as MDN Web Developer Needs Assessment (Web DNA), which highlight browser compatibility as one of the top challenges faced by web developers.

“While there are browser compatibility issues in basically all of the web platform, the focus of this project is on a small number of the most problematic areas which can be made significantly better, thus removing them as top issues for developers,” shares Google while announcing the initiative.

The Chromium project had begun working on improving the browser compatibility in 2020 and have now fine-tuned the scope of the changes after roping in Microsoft. 

Microsoft shared that a joint working group of the stakeholders in the initiative first identified the focus areas based on feature usage data, number of bugs (or number of stars/upvotes on a given bug) in each vendor’s tracking system, various survey feedback, CanIUse data, and test results from web-platform-tests.

“We then split focus among the working group to focus on areas in respective implementations,” shares Microsoft adding that the objective of the Microsoft Edge team is to contribute fixes to Chromium to pass 100% of CSS Grid tests this year. 

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Via: Neowin

Mayank Sharma

With almost two decades of writing and reporting on Linux, Mayank Sharma would like everyone to think he’s TechRadar Pro’s expert on the topic. Of course, he’s just as interested in other computing topics, particularly cybersecurity, cloud, containers, and coding.