Bing again! Microsoft is annoying Google Chrome users on Windows with this pop-up

bing pop-up in chrome
(Image credit: Google, @TheDyslexicCow on Reddit)

Every time I set up a new computer, I download Chrome and make it my default browser. I'm familiar with Chrome and it's my preferred browser, and a ton of other people probably feel the same way. But that doesn't stop Microsoft from constantly trying to convert Chrome users to Edge/Bing users.

Recently, Windows users have spotted a pop-up in the Chrome browser that asks if they want to set Bing as the default search engine for Chrome (via Windows Latest and The Verge). One Reddit user (@TheDyslexicCow) took a screenshot of the pop-up and asked if it was malware... because it kind of looks like malware, and it's intrusive like malware.

But in a statement to The Verge from Caitlin Roulston, director of communications at Microsoft, she confirmed that the pop-ups were legit. She said, "This is a one-time notification giving people the choice to set Bing as their default search engine on Chrome." While this particular notification might only go out once, it probably won't be the last time users are pestered to switch to Bing or Edge.

Microsoft is constantly pushing out annoying pop-ups

After clarifying that recent pop-ups Windows users have been seeing are genuine, Roulston went on to say that the pop-up offers perks to Windows users if accepted, like more chat turns in Copilot, and that Microsoft "[values] providing [their] customers with choice, so there is an option to dismiss the notification."

But as Tom Warren from The Verge points out, truly valuing choice for its users should include the ability to disable these pop-ups easily and permanently. But with so many different pathways for Microsoft to push through advertisements for Edge and Bing, it's difficult to avoid all these pop-ups completely.

Previously, Microsoft has rolled out pop-up advertisements on the Windows taskbar, after OS updates, and in Chrome, like this most recent pop-up. Warren even mentioned a bug from six months ago where Microsoft's Edge browser was importing browsing data and tabs from Chrome without user consent, and another bug had Edge reporting every site you visited on Chrome to Microsoft.

Perhaps Microsoft will eventually do away with these intrusive pop-ups and give up the fight to convert Chrome users. All that saved time could instead be devoted to improving the OS and adding new, useful features to Windows 12.

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