f you’re a Google Chrome user setting up a new Windows PC, the most important feature of Microsoft Edge is the ability to download Chrome. Microsoft is apparently aware of this behavior and is doing something about it: Neowin has spotted new Edge pop-ups that specifically try to dissuade users from downloading and installing Chrome, a change that I promise I didn’t know about when I wrote about Microsoft annoying promotion of Microsoft Edge literally yesterday.
You won’t see the pop-ups every time you try to download Chrome (I haven’t yet), but Neowin and other outlets like The Verge have spotted at least three different messages:
- “Microsoft Edge runs on the same technology as Chrome, with the added trust of Microsoft.”
- “‘I hate saving money,’ said no one ever. Microsoft Edge is the best browser for online shopping.”
- “That browser is so 2008! Do you know what’s new? Microsoft Edge.”
While the operating system-level pop-ups are a small escalation in the ongoing browser wars, this kind of behavior isn’t new. If you use Bing to search for essentially any web browser, including Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Vivaldi, or Brave, a large ad for Edge appears both above the search results and in a giant box to the right of the search results. And whenever you log into Google’s services using Edge or any other non-Chrome browser for the first time, you’ll get a “helpful” nudge about downloading and installing Chrome. But as the provider of Windows, Microsoft definitely has more opportunities to suggest using Edge, and it takes advantage of those opportunities with frustrating regularity.