Windows 10 Executes Edge Browser By Default, Angers Mozilla Firefox

Before Windows 10, Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome were two of the most popular and widely used internet browsers in laptops, PCs, and mobiles across the globe. But then, Windows 10 happened, and the new Microsoft Edge browser that comes bundled with the latest Windows 10 update started crawling its way to millions of gadgets by default—something that made Mozilla Firefox CEO Chris Beard not too eager to upgrade to Windows 10.

In a blog post by Mozilla Firefox CEO Beard at The Mozilla Blog, the Mozilla Firefox team writes an open letter to Windows 10 maker Microsoft to “undo its aggressive move to override user choice on Windows 10.” This open letter by Firefox is triggered by the Windows 10 update feature that automatically engages the Microsoft Edge browser as the default browser for users upgrading to Windows 10.

For those who are still undecided about upgrading to Windows 10 and have yet to upgrade their PCs, laptops and mobile phones to the new Windows 10 OS, Tim Biggs at the Sydney Morning Herald explains how intrusive Windows 10 has become as it forces their new apps like the Microsoft Edge and Groove on default for the Windows 10 upgraders.

Windows 10 express install overrides user preferences
Windows 10 express install overrides user preferences

For those who are upgrading to Windows 10 but aren’t as tech savvy as others, the ‘Express Install’ option is always the go-to option. However, this Windows 10 ‘Express Install’ move is a tricky little feature that overrides the user’s default applications with the newer Windows 10 apps, unbeknownst to the user upgrading to Windows 10.

Users who want to keep their old settings must select the (very small) custom settings button when installing Windows 10, and then during a screen that explains some of Microsoft’s new apps, must click a link (which is blue text on a blue background) that says “let me choose my default apps”.”

It has become very unobvious and difficult for users to keep their prior settings when upgrading to Windows 10 as the upgrade aggressively pushes the newer Windows 10 apps to the users. Mozilla Firefox CEO Beard explains in his letter how disappointed he is with Microsoft’s Windows 10 since it focuses more on marketing its newer Windows 10 apps than promoting user choice.

With the launch of Windows 10 we are deeply disappointed to see Microsoft take such a dramatic step backwards. It is bewildering to see, after almost 15 years of progress bolstered by significant government intervention, that with Windows 10 user choice has now been all but removed. The upgrade process now appears to be purposefully designed to throw away the choices its customers have made about the Internet experience they want, and replace it with the Internet experience Microsoft wants them to have.”

To counter Microsoft’s aggressive move with the Edge browser in Windows 10, Mozilla Firefox released a step-by-step tutorial on how to restore Mozilla Firefox as your default internet browser after upgrading to Windows 10.

In response to the disapproval of Mozilla Firefox and a couple of tech critics with the Windows 10, Microsoft tells CNET that it is open to making adjustments with Windows 10 based on user feedback.

We designed Windows 10 to provide a simple upgrade experience for users and a cohesive experience following the upgrade. As with all aspects of the product, we have designed Windows 10 as a service; if we learn from user experience that there are ways to make improvements, we will do so.”

[Images via Sydney Morning Herald]