Switching from Microsoft Edge gets more annoying in Windows 11

This browser popup, which you see in Windows 10 the first time you try to open a link after installing a new browser, isn't present in current beta builds of Windows 11.

Enlarge / This browser popup, which you see in Windows 10 the first time you try to open a link after installing a new browser, isn't present in current beta builds of Windows 11. (credit: Andrew Cunningham)

A report from The Verge today has drawn attention to the way current Windows 11 betas are handling third-party Web browsers like Chrome and Firefox. These tweaks continue a trend that has intensified over Windows 10's lifecycle—you can use any browser you want on Windows! But are you sure that you wouldn't like to try Microsoft Edge instead? Are you sure? Are you really, really sure?

There are two functional changes in the current beta of Windows 11 that make switching browsers more annoying. The first is that the OS no longer pops up a window asking you if you'd like to switch browsers the first time you click a link after installing a new browser. The second is that the "default apps" screen has removed the broad app categories currently available in Windows 10—Windows 10 allows you to set the default email app, map app, music player, photo viewer, video player, and web browser from the default apps screen, while Windows 11 makes you choose an app first and assign defaults one file extension at a time.

When you do attempt to change the default app that handles .htm or .html files from Edge to something else, Windows 11 takes it as yet another opportunity to make sure that you're absolutely, positively sure that you actually want to switch away from Edge.

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