Microsoft is out with another new business-friendly tool: Edge for Business.
It may not be the most dramatic, awe-inspiring name for a new piece of software, but it’s a pretty significant development — one that could be a big help to your business, in the right circumstances.
So what is Microsoft Edge for Business? And what are the reasons a business should — or shouldn’t — switch?
What is Microsoft Edge for Business?
Microsoft Edge for Business is pretty much what it sounds like: it’s a version of Microsoft’s Edge web browser, but built specifically for business customers rather than at-home consumers.
Benefits of Switching to Edge for Business
Edge for Business delivers a lot of value in the right circumstances. Here are a few exclusive features or benefits you’ll have access to if you switch.
Separation between Work and Personal Browsing
One of the big new features is a “wall of separation” between personal and work browsing. With an increase in work from home and bring your own device (BYOD), more and more people end up blurring the line between these two spheres.
This blurring of lines creates some weird, unhelpful side effects: maybe you’re getting ads for project management software while chilling out on YouTube, or (worse) getting ads for whatever hobby or medical condition you were googling yesterday during today’s important client meeting.
You’ve probably also seen someone screen-share and accidentally reveal personal information, their bookmarks bar, or even a list of open tabs they didn’t want you to read.
Edge for Business solves all of these by splitting work and personal into two separate windows, each with its own set of favorites and caches. It can even automatically direct links to the right windows: Microsoft 365 links jump to the Business window, and shopping or social links jump to the Personal one.
But it’s not just privacy and advertising Microsoft is addressing here. It’s also doing this to enhance security.
Edge for Business includes native “rich enterprise controls for secure data access and leak prevention” in its work browser, relying on Microsoft Entra ID. What this means is that you’ll have even more control over business browsers, keeping them as locked down and secure as you need.
At the same time, the personal browser isn’t quite a free-for-all: it’s still lightly managed, which means your organization can impose certain controls (like blocking explicit and scam content) and maintain safety on your network — without your employees feeling like their privacy is being invaded.
AI seems like it’s everywhere these days, and Microsoft is leading the way. It’s incorporating generative and assisting AI tools into Edge for Business via Microsoft 365 Copilot. You might have seen Copilot already in your Teams app, but now it’s right there in the browser.
One feature that Microsoft has promised (but that hasn’t launched yet) is custom branding. We aren’t sure how many businesses really need to brand their browsers, but it’s a smart addition that should enable some creative flexibility.
Possible Reasons Not to Switch
The biggest reason not to switch — at least not yet — is that Edge for Business is still in Public Preview. That means it’s not 100% perfect and ready to go. Tech-savvy users could enjoy the benefits and work around anything that’s broken or not working correctly. But your everyday employees don’t need that kind of hurdle.
Other possible reasons not to switch include if you’re running markedly older hardware (like hardware that can’t upgrade to Windows 11) or if you’re invested in third-party security or endpoint management tools that aren’t compatible.
If you have any questions about this new innovation from Microsoft, including whether your business is ready for the upgrade, we’re here to help. Reach out to our team anytime!