Microsoft has quietly abandoned a change introduced with Windows 11 caused anger and frustration for a large portion of users.
With the latest Windows 11 update, now in the process of rolling out, changes the operating system defaults Web browser as simple as the push of a button.
The new system is a far cry from the previous arrangement, which required users to manually register their browser preferences for each and every file extension (.HTML, .HTM, .PDF, etc.).
Windows 11 and Microsoft Edge
Since the launch of Windows 11 last year, Microsoft has put a lot of effort into the effort to weaponize the new operating system to make Microsoft Edge a real competitor in the browser market.
In addition to intentionally making it more difficult to change the default web browser in Windows 11, Microsoft has also taken steps to funnel all the links placed in its own products (e.g. Start Menu) into Edge, regardless of which browser is listed as the preferred option.
Given the size of the Windows installation base, you would think that efforts of this kind would have a significant impact on the Microsoft Edge market share. But in reality, the browser still struggles to gain ground over Chrome or Safari, which have 82% of the market, latest data (opens in a new tab) suggestions.
However, for Microsoft’s merit, the company seems to have suffered from angry howls from the community. With the latest Windows 11 update, switching the default browser is a one-click process, done from within the default apps menu in Settings.
Instead of encouraging Windows users to adopt Edge, Microsoft will instead rely on a steady stream of feature updates to naturally appeal to people. For example, in recent months, the browser has received upgrades that allow users to debug performance problems, shield against novel cyberattacks and switch freely between multiple profiles.