Microsoft has introduced a new feature for Edge Canary users that will give them better control over background data usage by allowing them to disable browser updates when a metered connection is detected (via Techdows).

Currently, Chromium browsers treat cellular networks as metered and WiFi networks as unmetered. In a Chromium commit, Microsoft pointed out that only 1% of all WiFi connections are metered while only 35-40% of cellular connections are set to metered. On the other hand, 35% of all the users have set at least one connection as metered on their systems. As such, the company wants to make a change to the Chromium framework that will give users more control over their data usage. On the same commit, a Google engineer pointed out that Chromium browsers currently assume that all metered connections will be cellular. So adding support for "IsConnectionMetered() API via NetworkChangeNotifier" would be better for the users.

Microsoft has already introduced this new change to Edge Canary and it will allow users to decide if they want to download updates over metered connections. If you are using Microsoft Edge Canary then you can follow the steps below to enable or disable the feature:

  • Launch Microsoft Edge Canary and click on three dots on the top right corner
  • Navigate to Help & Feedback > About Microsoft Edge
  • Toggle "Download Updates over metered connections" to turn on updates over metered connections

You can follow the aforementioned steps and toggle off the setting to prevent Edge from downloading updates over a metered connection. Edge uses Windows 10's metered connection settings to determine if the current network is metered or not. If you are using a metered connection and want to take advantage of the new option then you will need to set your current network connection as metered. You can do so by navigating to properties of your current network using the WiFi icon on the taskbar and toggling on the “Set as metered connection” option.