After announcing Microsoft Edge move from EdgeHTML to Chromium/Blink, Microsoft actively contributing to Chromium code base, that’s not surprising at all and this shouldn’t surprise you also. Apparently, Edge team wants to bring caret browsing and high contrast mode natively to Chrome browser.
Native Caret browsing in Chrome
The caret browsing feature available in Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer and Firefox browser, allows navigating to content in the webpage with the keyboard without using the mouse.
Pressing F7 shortcut triggers the prompt to turn on caret browsing which allows the user to select text with the keyboard when the feature is activated in supported browsers. Google Chrome offers an extension for the same.
But Edge team points out offering extension avoids using it in incognito mode, in a working environment where enterprise policies place restrictions on extensions and when guests browsing is used.
Now Edge team wants to offer their solution to implement native caret browsing in Chrome browser and display the turn caret browsing on the dialog when F7 shortcut is pressed.
If function key not available, alternative keys need to be used, for instance, on Mac, there will be no function keys, MS suggests assigning this shortcut: command +Option +7.
High Contrast mode in Chrome
Microsoft has another proposal for Chromium team, they want Chromium on Windows to offer high contrast mode natively too without using any extension which Microsoft Edge does now. FYI, enabling high Contrast feature on Windows inverts everything (except images) black to white and white to black so that text will be more readable on screen for low vision users.
After turning on high contrast mode in Windows 10, if you open Chrome browser, it asks to install high contrast and dark theme extensions in its browser.
MS on High Contrast Explainer commit says this: “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”.
A bug has been filed back in 2016 says Enterprise users not allowed to install high contrast and caret browsing extensions due to restrictions, but they want the accessibility features badly.
Chromium developer who created the itssue insisted these features should be built-in to browser rather than available as extensions. Yes! MS edge could contribute to this as they’ve mentioned on their website.