With the new Microsoft Edge, the Redmond giant introduced changes that, without a doubt, were a success. Said browser is Chromium-based, the same open source technology that Google Chrome is built on. However, despite this common ground, both browsers are very different in terms of interface, and this translates into a user experience that, of course, not all user profiles alike.
It is not a secret that, despite the good work that the American firm has done with Microsoft Edge, said browser it did not have, by far, the expected success, and today it is far behind, in market share, Google Chrome. Microsoft knows this, and to try to improve that situation it has decided to resort to a strategy that, at the very least, deserves to be described as “curious.”
Some users are beginning to receive the notice that we see in the cover image. This notice appears in the stable version of Windows 11, when we open Microsoft Edge and the browser detects that we have accessed the official Google Chrome download page. The message says, verbatim: “Microsoft Edge runs on the same technology as Chrome, with the added value of Microsoft’s trust.”
The objective of that message is very clear, to persuade the user not to install Google Chrome and to decide to give Microsoft Edge at least a chance. I must say that I have tried it more than once, but I am so used to Google Chrome, and I use it so much time during the day that, in the end, I preferred to stick with it. By this I do not mean that the Microsoft alternative is not good, I simply prefer Google’s.
Is what Microsoft Edge does ethical?
A difficult question to answer. From the most absolute impartiality, it does not seem to me something so serious as to consider it unethical, after all, the browser only sends a message remembering that it uses the same technology as Google Chrome, and that it is backed by Microsoft. There is nothing strange or misleading in the text, and therefore I think it does not deserve to be considered unethical.
In this sense, I think it is important to remember that Google tried to scare Microsoft Edge users at the time, and that it did so by showing them a security warning when visiting the Chrome Web Store that said: “Google recommends switching to Chrome to use extensions safely”. This message was accompanied by a link that took the user directly to the Chrome download website. In this case, however, yes we see an unethical nuance, since it is tried to make the user believe that Microsoft Edge is not capable of managing extensions in a secure way.
In the same way, the advertising of «switch to Chrome» will also appear to us when we visit, using Microsoft Edge, different Google services, such as its well-known search engine, Gmail or Drive, so in the end we can’t consider the Redmond giant to have done anything really inappropriate, at least in a strict sense, seeing the attitude of his main rival.
Going back to the message that Microsoft Edge displays, this only appears, at the moment, in Windows 11, so those found in Windows 10 are not affected, although this may change at some point, so keep that in mind.