Microsoft’s rollout of its new Chromium-based Edge in Windows has been slammed as a forceful and intrusive attempt to get people to switch to its browser.
Multiple publications – including The Verge, Windows Central, and 9to5Google – have reported on complaints from users after the company started automatically installing the new Edge browser in an automatic update in early June.
Users of multiple versions of the operating system – including Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10 – have been left frustrated by Edge performing several unrequested actions after its installation.
Following a reboot after the update, the browser launches itself on startup and the user is presented with a full-screen pop-up window introducing the new Edge.
The user is unable to close the window from the taskbar, using Ctrl+W or Alt+F4, and is forced to hit the Get Started button.
This initiates a basic setup process for the browser, during which you are given the option to import your browsing data from your default browser.
However, as users on Reddit pointed out, at this point Edge has already imported this data without the user’s permission.
This was discovered after users saw certain information – such as the bookmarks from their default browser – appeared in the Edge browser behind the import dialogue box.
Microsoft has responded by telling Windows Central that the dialogue box gives users “the opportunity to keep or discard the imported data”. If a user chooses not to import data, this will be deleted.
However, if the customer chooses to end the setup process early by closing the window, residual data may not be fully deleted, Microsoft confirmed.
Shortcuts and no option to uninstall
Windows automatically places shortcuts to the Edge browser on the user’s desktop and in the first slot on the taskbar.
Later, if a user attempts to open a web page, they are again asked if they want to keep their default browser or switch to Edge, effectively ignoring the user’s previous choice of a preferred application.
To top it off, users are also unable to uninstall the Edge browser after this update.
Microsoft has previously taken several other measures to push its new Microsoft Edge browser to users who are not using it.
One example of this was an advertisement that was inserted into the Windows 10 start menu when a user searches their system from an alternative browser – such as Google Chrome.
Google responded by recommending Edge users switch to Google Chrome by displaying pop-ups on several Google sites – such as Docs, Search, Drive, and the Chrome Web Store.