Intel’s computer processor expertise is being put to work in Microsoft’s new Edge Web browser, the successor to Internet Explorer due this summer.
Edge, formerly Project Spartan, is the new default browser for Microsoft’s upcoming Windows 10 operating system. Representing a break from Internet Explorer’s past—including ditching ActiveX—Edge is a more streamlined and modern take on Windows Web browsing that includes a stripped-down user interface and Cortana integration.
“As a part of broader collaboration between Intel and Microsoft on Windows 10, Intel engineers are collaborating with us closely to implement [single instruction, multiple data (SIMD)], a future ECMAScript proposal, in Chakra and Microsoft Edge,” wrote Microsoft’s Rob Hwacinski and Gaurav Seth, principal program manager leads for Edge and Chakra, respectively, along with Juan Rodriguez, an Intel senior principal engineer, in a joint blog posting.
In short, users can expect snappier, more responsive Web experiences with less processor overhead.
“SIMD exploits data level parallelism by utilizing specific SIMD hardware instructions, which are supported in most of the modern chipsets regardless of the architecture types,” stated the group. “The SIMD instruction set enables performing the same operation on multiple values simultaneously, thus providing much faster code execution when working on data vectors.” Another perk is extended battery life, they said.
SIMD support aside, Intel is also lending a hand with several of the browser’s other components. “As an example, Intel recently contributed an optimization to improve navigation (load) time for pages containing several in-line elements, optimizations to reduce DOM [Document Object Model] parse times for text-area elements, and participated in investigations and root cause analysis to improve page load/response times for the Microsoft Edge browser on Windows 10,” they reported.