Microsoft and Google announced today that they are partnering to identify and fix the top incompatibility issues on the web.
“We’re excited to join with Google, Igalia, and the broader web community in committing resources to a cross-browser effort called Compat 2021, with the goal of substantial improvements in … five areas where browser compatibility is a particularly strong pain point,” Microsoft’s Kyle Pflug writes. “Our joint working group identified the focus areas above 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.”
Those five key areas will familiar to web developers, and all are related to a technology called Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), which is used to describe the visual design of web apps and sites. They are CSS Flexbox, CSS Grid, CSS position: sticky, the CSS aspect-ratio property, and CSS transforms.
According to Google, this new effort expands on previous work done by companies like Microsoft, Mozilla, and itself.
“In 2020, Chromium started work addressing the top areas outlined in Improving Chromium’s browser compatibility in 2020,” Robert Nyman and Philip Jägenstedt explain. “In 2021, we are beginning a dedicated effort to go even further. Google and Microsoft are working together on addressing top issues in Chromium, along with Igalia. Igalia, who are regular contributors to Chromium and WebKit, and maintainers of the official WebKit port for embedded devices, have been very supportive and engaged in these compatibility efforts, and will be helping tackle and track the identified issues.”