The issue with Windows 10 upgrade resetting the default browser to Edge is a known one, and a lot has been said about it previously.
I refrained from making any comments until now, but my patience has run out.
What I want to address is how Microsoft’s anti-competitive practices create problems for the users – actual real-life people that use technology in their daily lives. What happened to putting them first?
Recently I got a call from an old friend of mine. She called with what has turned into a significant problem for her. It all started with the operating system on her PC upgrading from Windows 8 to Windows 10 – without her will and consent. Even worse, her default browser has been changed to Edge, even though she had no interest in using it.
I understand that Microsoft is concerned with the low usage of Edge, but instead of building a better browser, Microsoft is forcing its product onto people in the most unapologetic manner.
Every time Windows 10 upgrades, it changes the default browser to Edge. Same thing tends to happen when a new browser is installed – for some reason, it leads to restoring Edge as the default option. Not the new browser, and not even the browser that was there as a default one previously.
Microsoft has made it complicated for a non-technical user to bring their old default browser back. My 72-year-old friend did not manage to do it, even though she tried.
Our goal as technology companies should be to provide great software to our users. At the same time, we should accept that some users prefer software created by other companies. It is our responsibility to be fair to the users, and this is what should drive the technology industry forward. Stripping users of their ability to choose or forcefully limiting their options stalls progress. Focusing on building great products is what should drive us to excel.
This is why we have created the Vivaldi browser in the first place – to put the user in charge of their browsing experience. What Microsoft is doing is simply imposing their own browser – Edge – on users.
So here is my question to you, Microsoft. Where has the user’s absolute prerogative to make a choice gone?
It is time to do the right thing. Stop stealing the default browser, accept user choice and compete on the merits.
This article was originally published on the Vivaldi Blog at vivaldi.com on January 24, 2017.