Native Caret Browsing And Windows High Contrast Mode To Be Added To Chromium-Based Browsers

At the end of 2018, Microsoft announced that they would be shifting their Edge browser to Chromium. Ever since this announcement, Microsoft has been actively contributing to the Chromium community. Microsoft is determined to make Chromium-based browsers work with Windows 10 seamlessly without any sort of problems or bugs. These bug fixes will allow the Edge-based Chromium to work as smoothly as EdgeHTML worked with Windows 10.

Caret Browsing

For the ill-informed, Caret browsing is a type of navigation which does not require a mouse. You can simply navigate content in a webpage using the keyboard. You can activate Caret browsing on supported browsers like Edge, Internet Explorer and Firefox by simply pressing the F7 shortcut, and allowing Caret browsing through the prompt.

Microsoft Edge GitHub claims that Microsoft is working on bringing Caret browsing to Chromium-based browsers natively. Even though, Google Chrome already has an extension available that enables Caret browsing. However, the Edge team states that extensions are not available in incognito and guest mode, making it impossible to use Caret browsing in incognito and guest mode. They further state that in a working environment, enterprises place restrictions on extensions. Hence the Edge team wants to solve this problem by natively implementing Caret browsing into Chromium.

The GitHub commit states, “The solution proposed in this explainer is to introduce native caret browsing in Chromium, a feature that is available in Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer,” It further states, “In order to do that we suggest to implement a current common activation shortcut: F7 and confirm caret browsing activation with a dialog.”

High Contrast Mode

Windows features a high-contrast mode which you can enable in the settings of Windows. Read more about the feature here. Chromium-based browsers don’t support this feature at the current moment. The only way to enable any sort of high-contrast mode on Chromium-based browsers is through an extension, which is a huge hassle. Microsoft is looking to port the high-contrast feature from the old Edge to the upcoming Chromium-based Edge browser. However, this is only being ported to the upcoming Chromium-based Edge. But it will eventually make it’s way to other Chromium-based browsers since it’s based on the same Source Code.

Microsoft states in the High Contrast commit that, “the advantage of enabling high contrast in the core platform, in comparison to the extension based approach, is that it provides a more seamless experience for users with the rest of Windows OS. This includes not just the browser-context, but also other Chromium powered applications”

We do not know as of yet when exactly the Caret Browsing feature will be added to Chromium-based browsers.

Murtaza Islam
Murtaza is a Computer Science student who takes immense interest in mobile technology. He believes the future of computing lies in smartphones because ARM architecture will eventually take over. He also loves to tinker with ROMs and kernels keeping up with the latest in smartphones.

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