Oops, Microsoft Is Doing It Again

Posted on September 12, 2018 by Mehedi Hassan in Windows 10 with 62 Comments

Microsoft has been pushing its Edge web browser quite a lot in Windows 10. The company recommends users to install Edge on its official websites, and asks users to use Edge instead of a different browser when they try changing their default browser on the OS. There are a number of other places where Microsoft promotes Edge, and it’s generally quite annoying.

Redmond is taking things a step further, though.

In the latest build of Windows 10 October 2018 Update, the OS prompts users to try Edge when they try to install a browser like Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox. When you download the installer for these browsers and try to install them, the Edge prompt will pop up, suggesting that “Edge is the faster, safer browser designed for Windows.” You could then choose to open Edge, or install your preferred browser anyway, reports Windows Central.

There’s even a setting to turn annoying prompts like this off, and Microsoft is calling them “app recommendations.” By going into Apps & Features in the Apps pages within the Settings app, you can turn these prompts off. And that’s really the problem here.

Instead of disabling the app recommendations by default, Microsoft seems to be enabling them by default. That is not only annoying, but it’s very obtrusive. You see, if a user makes the effort to manually download the installer for a browser with Edge, they obviously want to use that browser instead of Edge. So Microsoft trying to force users to use Edge here really doesn’t do anything — it’s just another irritating dialog you have to ignore in order to not use Edge, basically.

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Comments (66)

66 responses to “Oops, Microsoft Is Doing It Again”

  1. SherlockHolmes

    They will never learn the lesson.

  2. maglezs

    Why someone would install an invasive browser like Chrome? Microsoft Edge works perfectly fine an follows on Android and iOS.

  3. NoFlames

    I use edge and I haven't found a way to turn off Google's annoying requests to download chrome. It happens all the time when I visit Gmail or other Google sites. Google doesn't even say why it's better than edge and in my experience it isn't better since the last couple versions.

  4. MikeCerm

    I'm fine with this being on by default as a security feature -- similar to UAC -- just as long as it applies equally to all browsers and 3rd-party apps, and can be easily disabled. I can't tell you how many times I've removed malware-laden versions of Chromium that people inadvertantly installed while trying to install actual Chrome or some other utility that they should have thought twice before installing. People who are savvy enough to disable this will do so and have no trouble. People who aren't savvy enough should probably just heed the warning.

  5. Daekar

    Microsoft pushes me to use Edge far less than Spotify pushes its premium subscription or Google harasses me to install Chrome, or pushes its premium YouTube services.


    You are too hip to like Edge, we get it. But don't pretend like this is happening in a vacuum where no other large companies do it. I am SICK TO DEATH of getting spam from Amazon advertising yet more useless crap attached to my Prime subscription that I couldn't care less about - and I'm already giving them money!!

  6. RM2016

    This might be the most ridiculous post I have read here. Google does this and more. When I watch YouTube, Google tries to upsell me on their services, etc. Why don't you just change the name of this site to Paul Thurrot's Google site. Or perhaps, Good Google bad Microsoft. For goodness sakes this site doesn't even have the ability to let me register with my Microsoft account, but Google and Facebook are there. Its bad enough that when I switched to Android I had to sign up for Google's spyware, but to criticize Microsoft for pushing their browser is strange and illogical. They are a company trying to make money and yes I trust them with my information far more than spyware (Facebook and Google) that scours my info to sell it.

    • EZAB

      In reply to RM2016:

      Totally agree. I'm tired of the Google this, Google that. What happens when you go to Adobe.com to update Flash Player with IE or Edge and do not uncheck before you download the installer? A HEADACHE!

    • bluesman57

      In reply to RM2016:
      I can't believe this is supposedly a pro-Windows site. This and Paul's post ARE ridiculous. OMG they prompt you ONE time about installing Chrome? I don't think I can handle this unbelievable intrusion! How many people re-install Chrome? No one but nerds like us! ( Yes I am a proud Geek). If this was popping up every time you opened Chrome (or any other browser) it would be a big problem. But once? Come on. Google, Apple, and Facebook are 10 times worse.


  7. RobertJasiek

    Microsoft did it in the 90s, got a huge fine from the EU and N versions trouble, and was on the verge of being split on behalf of US courts. They ask for another huge fine.

    That some other companies are worse is no excuse at all, like the existence of criminals is never an excuse to commit a crime. Therefore, everybody stop the Google / Chrome "excuses"!

  8. Mehedi Hassan

    Guys, I don't know how hard it is to understand this: what Google does is advertising, what Microsoft is doing here is hijacking app installers. There's a huge difference. I am not saying what Google does is OK, because honestly it isn't. But Microsoft is taking it too far now.

  9. Winner

    Microshafted again.

  10. navarac

    I just turned it off and moved on. More importantly it would better if the default browser was honoured at all times.

  11. cayo

    This is getting worse and worse. It's about time this site changes its name to googlesupersite.com,

    • Tony Barrett

      In reply to cayo:

      You're kidding me right? Thurrott.com reports what's current, and yes, MS is current, but it's just one player in a big market now, and doesn't have the dominance it once had. This site is not a 'Microsoft only' realm. Google/Amazon/Apple have overtaken MS in many ways, and tricks like this to get people to use Edge (which has a lowly 2% market share by the way), which are embedded in the OS, only cry of MS desperation and underhand tactics.

      If you want to just talk Microsoft and believe they're still as important as they once were, hang out on windowscentral or onmsft. There's more fanboys there than u can shake a stick at.

      • cayo

        In reply to ghostrider:


        As a Google fanboy, you can think what you want, but Microsoft remains the biggest (actually with Apple the only) player on the desktop (unless you think Chromebook is still a thing) and has every right to promote its browser. This article is not fair, and the one by Paul is even worse.



        • Greg Green

          In reply to cayo:

          It used to be that if you wanted emails or internet you had desktop or laptop, which meant an 90% chance of Windows. Now desktops don’t even have 50% of the OS market anymore. MS is becoming increasingly irrelevant to the internet consumer.

    • boots

      In reply to cayo:

      The word 'Microsoft' appears 6 times in this article. 'Google' appears only once, and so does 'Mozilla'. What makes you think this article is all about Google?

  12. prettyconfusd

    It doesn't matter how many times I click "no" when Google pushes me to install Chrome on their search pages, on Gmail, on calendar, on YouTube... The blasted thing asks me again the next time! YouTube doesn't even honour your settings for auto-play from one day to the next.


    On one side you can't say that Microsoft is no longer a monopoly and then on the other chide them for doing the same thing an actual monopoly is doing.


    Just click no if you prefer and move on, even disable the entire thing - at least it's not going to pester you again, unlike Google.


    I get Microsoft is being pushy with Edge, but it kind of needs to be in order to get anywhere - as plenty of posts on this site have mentioned many times - Microsoft is in a losing battle here and the web is both the current and next major battlefield, if it doesn't push Edge adoption up somehow it'll be in an even worse state in a few years. As for the product itself? For the past 18 months it's been fine for the majority of users - it may not have every feature or extension Chrome currently has but for most of us that doesn't matter - so many people last saw the state it was in 2015, why not encourage users to take another look?


    This post is an example of the double standards so many choose to use when comparing the two companies - try using a browser that isn't Chrome for a few weeks and see how annoying it is to constantly get popups from Google pestering you to download and install their browser.


    A lot of people use Chrome, I get that, it seems that 100% of the tech reporting media use it so you only ever see the issue when other companies do it and brand it annoying when it's a fact of daily life for those of us who don't use Chrome.


    Paul gets a bit of a pass when it comes to his off the cuff glibness about these things as the entire site is essentially his opinions on this stuff, but I tend to expect more balance from the rest of you if you're simply reporting on things - impartiality is key in the news, even if a lot of news outlets seem to have forgotten that.


    Apologies to unload a little here, but there's been a few posts recently where you're just reporting something and yet seem outright hostile about what you're reporting on. If each post is going to be an opinion piece you need to remove 'News' from your heading, and simply keep 'reviews and analysis' and then there's no problem.

  13. Otto Gunter

    This reminds me a lot of the omnipresent "Sent from my iPhone" at the bottom of emails I get. Sure, you can change it, but (almost) no one ever did, and now instead of laughing at the technical ignorance of those people, I remain amazed at how clever Apple is re marketing. After all, how many "Sent from my MSdevice" emails do you get?

  14. jprestig

    I really, really, like Windows 10. But it's stuff like this that will push people away from it.

    • Stooks

      In reply to jprestig:

      In my experience 98% of Joe Consumers neither like or dislike Windows 10 or any other Windows version. They will complain if something does not work and not say a thing if it works just fine. They are basically indifferent.


      When this popup comes to them, they will just close it and move on. They will not complain or even talk about it.


      I don't like this but I will forget about it 3min after I experience it.

      • fbman

        In reply to Stooks:

        So true, I deal with a lot everyday pc users and they dont really care about these things.


        IT is a funny enviroment, as its the minority that is a the loudest. People, that would visit a site are genuinely interested in the technology and dont not represent the views of the majority of pc users. Yes, we may influence the decision of everyday users.

  15. rfog

    That is not the way. Instead of do a better product, they try to push with lies and FUD.

  16. dcdevito

    Serious question...what does Microsoft get in return of users using Edge over another browser?

    • Chris_Kez

      In reply to dcdevito:

      Most immediately they get your browsing history and your search history (assuming you keep Bing as the default search engine). This improves Bing and likely feeds into other AI/ML algorithms. It also means one fewer person that Google is collecting data from and serving ads to. Using Edge on desktop also provides some additional justification for using Edge on mobile, and Edge is also linked to the new Sets feature. Edge (and Bing) provide additional bits of connective tissue, if you will, that help Microsoft deliver a more complete and consistent experience across computing activities and devices.

  17. djross95

    Just purchased a used MacBook Pro laptop and, while it's not perfect, the OS is blessedly free of all of this nonsense. You don't realize how much b.s. there is in Windows 10 until you use something else. All I really miss is touch, and I can survive without that. I'd come back to MS if they stripped all this stuff out, but I'm not holding my breath.

  18. North of 49th

    I agree that as someone who uses Microsoft's services that my choice for settings/default apps should be respected the first time I make it. Period. If I want to change my mind, make it obvious and easy to do in the settings.

    To be balanced about this issue, Microsoft isn't the only one doing this. For example, if you go to Google's search engine using a browser other than Chrome, there is a pop-up message in the top right corner that reads: "Switch to Chrome Hide annoying ads and protect against malware on the web" which is just as bad in my books because of Google's relationship to ads in the first place.

    I agree that making a better product is the best policy. How to get your message out is the part none of these companies have done well.

  19. MikeGalos

    Wow. A web browser manufacturer putting up a "Use our browser?" tag on their company's websites, apps and programs. Imagine.


    Oh, wait. EVERY browser manufacturer has done that since Netscape. Try using ANY Google product or site without using Chrome for some examples.

  20. webdev511

    Just make Edge better by decoupling release cycles from OS release and oh I'd REALLY love NoScript for Edge...

  21. FullyLoaded

    meh this one doesn't bother me so much. As long as it only comes up once when installing then regular users might find it helpful to know about alternatives.

  22. Chris_Kez

    This is the way things are now. Google does the same thing, asking/suggesting I download and use Chrome after I've used a Google site. And the YouTube app on iOS keeps asking me if I want to subscribe to their premium service; I have to decline that pop-up before I can use the app.

    On a related note, I wish I could tell Microsoft that I don't have any kids with an Android phone. I don't mind getting tips/suggestions in the Action Center, but they keep surfacing the tip about family controls or whatever and it is literally useless to me. Give me some way to snooze that particular tip for a year or something. And maybe come up with some new, different and more relevant tips for me.

  23. Illusive_Man

    Chrome constantly asks to be default and if I search Google from a non chrome browser it asks do I want to download Chrome.

    • dontbe evil

      In reply to Illusive_Man:


      this...and also often when you install 3rd party apps, it automatically install chrome and set is as default browser (if you don't uncheck from advanced settings)… but you know google is good can do everything, MS is bad

      • Stooks

        In reply to dontbe_evil:

        I did not know that any browser install on Windows 10 can change the default? Are you talking Windows 7?


        With 10 the 3rd party browser will install and ask if I want to make it the default. If I say yes (Chrome and FF in this case) it will open of the settings section for default apps but I must ultimately change the setting.

    • Winner

      In reply to Illusive_Man:

      Yes, but the difference is that you are going to a website that Google owns. Google is certainly within its rights to suggest its own products.

      But to me an OS - that you already paid for (even as part of your HW purchase), as opposed to ad-supported, should NOT be pushing software. The OS should only be there to support system functions, utilities, etc.

  24. RonH

    It is easy to turn off

  25. actionthomas

    Yeah, Microsoft is the only company trying to push its products. Oh, wait!

  26. yaddamaster

    I don't have a problem with this. Just got a new computer and the prompts to keep trying Edge were fine. I've kept Edge as the default browser so far just to try it out again. I love the reading mode.


    If Microsoft could sync up bookmarks from Chrome I'd probably use Edge all the time at home and Chrome at work. Not just a one-time import.

  27. whiplash55

    Edge is finally, usable, as of the Spring update. There are still issues, but they push too hard considering it's barely done. But Google does the same crap on their sites, and I have uninstalled Chrome from all of my computers just because I don't care for it. Edge isn't even available on Windows 7 or 8.1, if it's so great make it available for all of your currently supported operating systems, it's just a browser, and they make versions for IOS and Android.

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