Microsoft accused of anti-competitive tactics in browser wars
MANILA, Philippines – Vivaldi CEO Jon von Tetzchner called on Microsoft to stop its "anti-competitive practices" when it comes to browser choice.
In a blog post on Tuesday, January 24 (January 25, Manila time) von Tetzchner – who also founded the Opera browser before starting the Vivaldi browser initiative – asked Microsoft to consider how the company's actions "create problems for the users – actual real-life people that use technology in their daily lives." (Read: Vivaldi: A dream browser for web lovers and power users)
Microsoft's Windows 10 operating system appears to change its default browser back to Microsoft Edge, usually after a full build update. For those without the technical know-how to get their default browser back, this usually means links from emails and other sources will open on Edge rather than on a user's chosen browser.
The issue of a forced default browser setting change compacts itself when one considers Windows 10 automatically updates unless you tell it not to.
He added that installing a new browser will also revert your choice of default back to Microsoft Edge, without any input from the user.
"I understand that Microsoft is concerned with the low usage of Edge, but instead of building a better browser, Microsoft is forcing its product onto people in the most unapologetic manner," von Tetzchner said.
"Our goal as technology companies should be to provide great software to our users. At the same time, we should accept that some users prefer software created by other companies. It is our responsibility to be fair to the users, and this is what should drive the technology industry forward," he added.
While users with some knowledge of the settings on Windows 10 can keep on changing the default browser back to their personal choice, it is not a user-friendly experience. Those who don't have the technical skills to figure out how to change the settings will likewise be left in the dark.
"Stripping users of their ability to choose or forcefully limiting their options stalls progress. Focusing on building great products is what should drive us to excel," von Tetzchner continued. – Rappler.com