Microsoft is unquestionably the authority when it come the end-user PC market, but despite the whopping success of Windows throughout the years, the US giant just never seems to get it right with web browsers. Ever since the days of Netscape, Internet Explorer has been consistently outstaged by some leaner, prettier, faster and more standard-compliant alternative.
Shaking such a deplorable reputation, be it deserved or not, has proven a nearly impossible task and despite the new direction, total redesign, better performance and even totally new name, the Microsoft Edge browser is still having a hard time retaining a loyal audience. But you don’t have to trust me on that, the statistics speak for themselves.
In any case, Microsoft has now hatched a new, slightly more aggressive plot to make you stick with the Edge browser that comes bundled with Windows 10. It appears that the first time you open up the browser and use Microsoft’s own Bing search, which is unsurprisingly also set as a default and look up “Chrome” or “Firefox”, the results come up along with a quite serious looking gray information strip, explaining that Microsoft Edge is the recommended choice on Windows 10.
Now, we can definitely understand this desire for a clean slate and a new chance for Edge, but Microsoft is heading down a slippery slope yet again. Let’s look back a little bit, shall we. A few years ago after a major industry scandal unfolded with accusations that Microsoft was abusing it OS monopoly to push Internet Explorer on users, a EU ruling forbid the company from setting it as a default browser and gave birth to a peculiar default browser chooser. That was back in 2009 and you might have missed it altogether, if you happen to live outside the European Union. The said regulations were active for five years and are no longer in place since the beginning of 2015.
While this does mean that Microsoft is free to push Edge, the question can easily be rekindled and such banners are a risky gamble. On the other hand, all you loyal Microsoft fans out there can rest assured that Edge or a similar built-in browser isn’t going away any time soon. Default or not, it is still a vital component of windows, needed for a lot of core and third-party apps to function. So chances are that in a way we are all Edge users, it all depends on how you look at it.