Microsoft Won’t Force Windows 10 Users to Open Links in Its Own Browser

Company changes its mind on controversial Mail app update

Jul 6, 2018 21:01 GMT  ·  By Bogdan Popa ·

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Microsoft announced earlier this year that it wanted to force Windows 10 users to open links in Microsoft Edge, with the company citing security as the main reason.

The Mail app was the first Windows 10 app to get this controversial behavior, which essentially meant that users receiving links in emails would have had to stick with Microsoft Edge for opening them.

Microsoft wanted to ignore third-party browsers installed on the computer and instead force users to run Edge, but as it turns out, the company has recently changed its mind completely.

An early screenshot of a future Windows 10 Mail app update shows options within the client that allow users to configure whether to open links in Microsoft Edge or not. In other words, users will have the power to choose if they want to stick with the default browser or go for a third-party one to handle links in the Mail app.

Google Chrome, the top browser

While this update isn’t yet available for users, Microsoft is expected to include it in a future preview build of Windows 10 or to deliver it as part of a Mail app update also aimed at insiders.

Microsoft’s decision to force users to stick with Microsoft Edge came at a time when Google Chrome clearly dominated the browser world on the desktop. Third-party data shows Chrome is the leading choice with more than 60 percent share, while Microsoft Edge is very far behind with a little over 4 percent.

Many believed this change was part of Microsoft’s aggressive tactic to boost Edge share, but as it turns out, the company did listen to feedback and decided it’d be better to let users choose what browsers to use for opening links in their apps.

Windows 10 Redstone 5 is due to land in October for all users, with insiders already allowed to download early builds of the update.

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