Microsoft: use Edge or Ads

Martin Brinkmann
Nov 4, 2016
Updated • Jul 5, 2017
Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge

Windows 10 felt in many regards like an operating system that was not ready for release back when Microsoft released it. This was the case for the new system browser Microsoft Edge as well, as it lacked a lot of features.

While it was highly optimized, it felt like a browsing shell more than a full browser in many regards. Microsoft worked on improving Edge, and it did so over time by introducing new functionality such as browser extensions.

Still, a first impression is usually one that lasts, and that is probably one reason why the vast majority of users on Windows 10 have switched over to Firefox, Chrome, Opera, Vivaldi or any of the other third-party browsers.

So how does Microsoft get people to give Edge another chance? Ads was the answer apparently, as users have started to see taskbar advertisement on Windows 10 like the one spotted by Brad Chacos below.

edge ad windows 10

These ads appear over the Edge icon in the Windows 10 taskbar, even when Edge is not open. They do appear only when Edge is not the default system browser but that covers the majority of Windows 10 systems.

Since it advertises Microsoft Edge and Microsoft Rewards, it is possible that the campaign is reserved to the United States. The reason for this is simple: Microsoft Rewards are only available in the US right now.

This is not the only ad that promotes Microsoft Edge that users may see however. Microsoft is pushing ads in the Action Center as well stating that Chrome is draining battery fast and that switching to Edge would better the situation.

Both ads have some use for users and try to promote a feature of Microsoft Edge or Microsoft that may be beneficial to users.

One could argue that this is a good thing, and it probably would not get such a bad reception if Microsoft would provide clear and concise options to turn of these after they appear once.

The main issue that many Windows 10 users may have with these ads is however that is seems impossible to get rid of those advertisements once and for all.

While you can turn off the Windows Customer Experience Program and several ad-related preferences in the Settings application, there is no guarantee that these changes will stick through updates.

Changes to custom user settings do one thing more than anything else: they irritate users.  I cannot say how many users are enticed by the ads to switch to Microsoft Edge or at least give it another try.

For now, the only 100% way of making sure you don't get these ads seems to be to start using Edge.

Now You: What's your take on Microsoft Edge?

Microsoft: use Edge or Ads
Article Name
Microsoft: use Edge or Ads
Microsoft runs a promotion for Edge currently on Windows 10 that pushes taskbar ads to devices running the operating system.
Ghacks Technology News

Previous Post: «
Next Post: «


  1. said on December 17, 2016 at 1:44 am

    These aren’t ads, they’re nagware! Like the gazillion times my ‘free’ antivirus nags me to add they other programs or upgrade for $$. Both force me to another product instead!

    And as to ‘shut up and stop whining’, umm that my RIGHT to voice my displeasure with ANY product I buy that doesn’t perform the way you’d expect! The sex analogy makes NO frickin sense at ALL. I’m not complaining my computer is going off working for some other user, its NAGGING me to change how I do things and by hurting how I do things! So YOU shut up.

  2. Bobo said on November 6, 2016 at 6:44 pm

    Again: You agreed to this when installing Windows 10 so shut up.Whining about things you don’t like in Windows 10 while using Windows 10 is like having a prostitute girlfriend and getting really upset when she has sex with someone else. The rest of us are just having a ball and laughing at you because your girlfriend is a prostitute.

    1. Parker Lewis said on November 7, 2016 at 10:03 am

      And double again: What’s the percentage of Windows 10 users who were in a position to make an educated choice, assuming they had a choice in the first place ?

      And people may like Windows 10 but not tracking. Since when did customers not have a right to complain ?

      Wrapping your “thought” into alpha-male wannabe speech isn’t going to make you more convincing with such an age-old repelled argument.

  3. RPWheeler said on November 6, 2016 at 12:46 am

    > What’s your take on Microsoft Edge?

    1) Microsoft was never able to make a good browser and won’t be.
    2) I will abstain from Windows 10 for as long as I could. To hell with ads.

  4. Trusted one said on November 5, 2016 at 6:33 pm

    Microsofts CEO is Satya Nadella , he is an Indian and Indian has a Caste system , Caste is a form of social stratification , because of this Microsoft ignored Our BUG reports , ignored what users want and ignored what users will , Sorry to say this but Satya Nadella was the wrong person to be a Microsoft CEO now Microsoft has a Caste system , users is slave and Microsoft is master (At least this is the Microsoft weather)

    1. Parker Lewis said on November 6, 2016 at 10:07 am

      I’m sorry but we cannot accept your application to Sophist school with that. The whole Guy -> Nation thing needs to be reworked in a more convincing way, perhaps adding more steps such as Guy -> Guy’s past -> Guy’s craftily selected quotes -> Nation’s problem ingrained in Guy.
      Then there’s the whole Guy’s nation problem -> US company’s problem, see, using Guy as the only link may be too weak to convince your audience, so now that we know he is a slave-driver perhaps you need to craftily show that he’s all powerful in the company, then that he spent significant time and effort implementing Nation’s problem into Company’s policies, and THEN bring in your initial observation that Company ignores users, fluidly, as if it was a natural conclusion that can only come to be if everything preceding it is true.

      I hope you can train and try again to join me next year where I teach at Sophist school.

  5. Sean said on November 5, 2016 at 5:13 pm

    This is a gentle reminder from Microsoft to move to Linux.

    1. Steve said on November 5, 2016 at 8:19 pm

      I moved to Linux 20 years ago. 4 years ago I moved on to FreeBSD.
      I feel bad for people who are at the mercy of proprietary software vendors.

  6. pd said on November 5, 2016 at 3:12 pm

    As a supporter of the open web, it’s very concerning to see Edge not succeeding. Microsoft took a brave and credible risk in building Edge/rebranding IE. They killed off all the evil shite they had burdened the opeb web with, through IE, for well over a decade. Gone were the horrible proprietary APIs, the browser UI is minimal, the rendering engine highly standards compliant and the manner in which Microsoft managed their whole approach to their browser was opened up to developer input with transparency increased dramatically. IE never really had extensions/addons. Sure there was a token facility for them but it was never embraced. Edge has extensions/addons. MS also agreed to deprecate plugins and took the Chrome approach the the Flash question.

    There’s no substantial reason IE users should abandon Microsoft and ignore Edge. For the sake of the open web, I really wish they would give Edge a chance. As avid a Firefox supporter as I am, there’s no winners if Microsoft’s once in a generation attempt to be a good citizen in the browser vendor land is not successful.

    1. Mr Matt said on November 5, 2016 at 4:05 pm

      I want to use Edge and even agree with what your saying (mostly). Let’s be real though, and hold accountability. Edge is dukebar software, literally a pile of steaming junk. Many many months later, is still missing basic features.

      • password management (like basic import / export)
      • a bunch more things, just do a swift search

      It really shows too, the lack of care M$ has for Edge. Just launch up the app and “check about this app”. At first glance, it looks like they havn’t updated their software since 2015 —

      1. jupe said on November 7, 2016 at 2:20 am

        My about box shows a much newer version than yours

  7. Brent R Jones said on November 5, 2016 at 2:01 pm

    Don’t overreact. Microsoft is a business; they try to promote themselves in their operating system. What other business, trying to make increasing profits, would not do this. I use all the major browsers to learn. Ads are part of the cost of using a nearly free and helpful Internet.

    1. Parker Lewis said on November 5, 2016 at 2:23 pm

      ” Microsoft is a business; they try to promote themselves in their operating system. What other business, trying to make increasing profits, would not do this. ”
      This has never been a valid argument for anything, I don’t think I need to say why :)

      The difference though, between Microsoft/Google and other businesses is that they can slip into abuse of dominance.

      The Edge ads are okay for now, but if Microsoft gets serious about pushing their browser I hope they will “dose” their gigantic marketing advantage, like I hoped Google would, except they didn’t. I doubt Microsoft will be any better, should they get serious and succeed.

  8. Avinash said on November 5, 2016 at 1:18 pm

    All these things never used to happen back when Gates was still running Microsoft.

  9. zund said on November 5, 2016 at 1:13 pm

    “One could argue that this is a good thing”

    how so?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 5, 2016 at 3:01 pm

      Well, if the benefits are real you will benefit from a longer lasting battery, or may grab some rewards when using Edge and Bing. I’m not saying this is for anyone, but some users may probably want to know about it at the very least.

  10. chesscanoe said on November 5, 2016 at 1:08 pm

    I’ve never had Edge as my default browser. I do have it pinned to my task bar, but very rarely use it. Microsoft apparently continues to think bribery works for its customer base, but I have never seen an ad in the notification area or anywhere else except for the lock screen when there was an ad for the recent Microsoft and Apple Events, which I did watch using Edge. Since those intrusions actually interested me, I didn’t and don’t object to it.

  11. ozone333 said on November 5, 2016 at 12:32 pm

    I’m so glad I never “upgraded” to Windows 10… lol

  12. Henk van Setten said on November 5, 2016 at 11:43 am

    I use only Windows 8.1 and Linux Mint, so this doesn’t affect me. To be honest I feel little pity for those people who willingly and intentionally “upgraded” to Windows 10. You choose to go with it, so now deal with it.

    I do feel sorry, however, for all less tech-savvy people who last year suddenly saw their computers “upgraded” to Windows 10 without them even expecting such a thing, much less understanding it. Last week I had to help an older lady (in her seventies) whose two-year-old laptop had gradually slowed down to a crawl, hung for hours while updating, and bothered her with a stream of pop-up notifications which she didn’t quite understand and therefore found disturbing.

    She really asked me if perhaps she had been hit by some kind of “virus”. It was just Windows 10! Luckily I was able to at least get it back to normal speeds again.

    What Microsoft tries to do with this system as a whole, and with parts of it such as start menu tiles and desktop notifications, reminds me of a crook who intentionally selects the most vulnerable, naive, defenseless people as his victims. Victims like this old lady, who knows almost nothing about computers, who just wants to email and Skype, and who tends to take everything seriously that “my computer tells me”.

    It’s this targeting and exploitation of exactly the most defenseless customers by Microsoft that I find immoral and disgusting. Sorry, I have no other words for it.

  13. buck said on November 5, 2016 at 11:29 am

    LOL, this is hilarous.

    “We spent a lot of money making this spyware, we really must insist that you use it. We are the Microborg Collective, resistence is futile.”

    Why the hell are all y’all jive turkeys still using Spy10 anyway?

  14. Keith said on November 5, 2016 at 9:39 am

    I don’t see any of these ads, but I took Edge off my task bar – so maybe that’s the answer? Or just that I don’t live in the USA?

  15. J D said on November 5, 2016 at 2:56 am

    Edge is a Spying Eye. A trojan in Spy10.

  16. Ashley said on November 5, 2016 at 12:00 am

    What a joke Microsoft has become! The bigger the company, the greedier and pushier they become. Same as Comcast, AT&T and many other big companies. They’re all crooks!!

  17. Timg said on November 4, 2016 at 11:21 pm

    Since Ad Block Plus was updated recently I no longer have any problem with the ads, it’s free and available from the store as an extension. It took me awhile to get used to Edge but like any learning curve objective I feel very comfortable using it now.

  18. Wayfarer said on November 4, 2016 at 10:16 pm

    Ivory tower mindsets – always and increasingly Microsoft’s weak spot.

    Groups of people sitting around a table chanting “What a great idea Sir!”, instead of having the balls to ask “Are you SERIOUS?!!”

    1. kevin said on November 5, 2016 at 6:54 pm

      Microsoft has a captive audience. They can do pretty much whatever they like, and the vast majority will just have to deal with it. Schools, individuals, businesses… They’re all locked in via software and most don’t want to make the effort to learn something new.

    2. 420 said on November 4, 2016 at 11:26 pm

      Like I said before, never have I seen a company with almost 100% market share, do everything possible to make its user base leave in droves. At first I was all pissed off at m$, now I am thankful as they have forced me to learn linux and leave the quagmire that is windoze.

  19. Mike said on November 4, 2016 at 7:56 pm

    I tried Edge again after the anniversary update that added Extension support. I went back to a combination of Chrome and Firefox though. Edge has some nice things going for it, it’s quite fast and is a massive improvement over Internet Explorer. However, the number of Extensions is still pathetically small and I have a hard time using a browser without uBlock Origin downloaded. I know uBlock is apparently getting ported over to Edge soon, but it cannot come soon enough. The other issue I ran into with Edge is that some websites were less responsive than they are with Firefox or Chrome. It was not widespread, but they were websites that I visit often enough where it became quite annoying. I’ll give Edge another shot when uBlock gets ported over, but until then it’s simply my second or third browser choice that I only open up on occasion.

  20. Kevin said on November 4, 2016 at 6:23 pm

    There was also this:

    I hope Microsoft continues with this behavior, and I hope it cements the reputation of Windows 10 in the eyes of the public as low-class garbage. Keep it up, Microsoft, you’re doing a fantastic job so far.

  21. pHROZEN gHOST said on November 4, 2016 at 6:01 pm

    They need to make one more change to make it more annoying in the new Microsoft way.

    If Edge is not the default browser, the “X” in the top right corner does not do anything and the ad stays topmost for 2 minutes.

    1. ilev said on November 5, 2016 at 8:48 am

      If Edge is not the default browser, the “X” in the top right corner will switch Edge to became the default browser.

  22. CaptnAmerca said on November 4, 2016 at 5:32 pm

    I have Edge on my taskbar, but I really only use it when I can’t seem to get a webpage to work in FireFox, usually because of Flash, or a script that gets blocked by my add-ons.

    For that purpose, it’s a fine browser.

  23. boris said on November 4, 2016 at 5:24 pm

    So, do not pin Edge to taskbar and do not use it.

    1. Iowadude said on November 5, 2016 at 3:25 pm

      Exactly. There is a ‘start’ button that houses dozens of things I use and a taskbar that contains the few things I do constantly, repetitively, every day. If Edge is your default, you have no problem. If it’s not, move it off your taskbar.

      Or maybe give up Windows all together, since some of you complain daily about what a terrible product it is.

  24. Croatoan said on November 4, 2016 at 4:52 pm

    My default browser is Edge. It’s because I don’t want LiberKey update to overwrite website that I have open.

  25. Parker Lewis said on November 4, 2016 at 4:34 pm

    They’re doing what Google does with Chrome, but using their own property, i.e. the OS. (Windows 10 is much about countering Google and becoming a “data” leader anyway.)

    If they are serious about this, it could get bad for all third party browsers that are not Chrome, because no one else has Google and Microsoft’s leverage.

    Only the threat of lawsuits are holding them back, and if they don’t get burnt every once in a while they tend to get cocky. Companies are very human in this regard :)

    1. A or B, not C. said on November 5, 2016 at 6:36 am

      @ Parker Lewis ……. U said, “They’re doing what Google does with Chrome, but using their own property, ”
      But once M$ hv licensed or rented out their property to others for $$$, they cannot simply enter their property that the licensees/renters is using, eg to put up ads. I’m making an analogy with a rental home/condo.
      ……. It would be a different case if like Google, M$ had licensed or rented out their property for free with the condition that the licensees/renters allow mostly free n reasonable access to the property. If M$ give me a free n nice house to stay, I won’t mind Satya Nadella putting ads on the front lawn n collecting my personal data.

      1. Parker Lewis said on November 5, 2016 at 2:01 pm

        I would :)

        I think you’re pointing at a real but petty difference. Money can take other forms than actual money. What’s important is that you are able to translate what you have into actual money at some point, but it doesn’t matter how and when. Google isn’t better or less accountable than Microsoft just because it doesn’t ask us directly for actual money.

        It’s true that at the moment, Microsoft takes both cash and data. But you can protect yourself from Microsoft eyes as you use their product, and for most of Windows 10’s life you could get it for free; whereas it’s not possible to protect yourself from Google, even when you *don’t* use their products you can only partially shield yourself from their prying eyes.

        All of this are valid but petty considerations. The bottom line is that both their interests go partly against that of their users, so we need technical and legal defences that even out the power gap between people and spying giants. (That doesn’t mean I am against Big Data, I love big data.)

    2. T said on November 4, 2016 at 6:26 pm

      This is a very good point.

  26. Joeseph Momma said on November 4, 2016 at 4:18 pm

    Windows 10 forced update debacle. Ads on lock screen. Now this. It is clear users are not the focus of MS.

  27. naveed said on November 4, 2016 at 4:17 pm

    Have they gone insane? How did they think that this is a good idea? Are they trying to piss off users and lose as many as they can as fast as possible?

    1. Mikhoul said on November 4, 2016 at 7:44 pm

      They want (M$) to break their own record for losing 40 millions Edge Users in October…

    2. Lurking About said on November 4, 2016 at 4:49 pm

      They do not understand the panic this might cause with some users and the irritation the inevitable phone call to their informal IT department causes. The options to avoid these ads and future idiocies is either use an earlier version of Windows, get a Mac, or install Linux. Depending on the situation none may be available.

  28. Yuliya said on November 4, 2016 at 4:15 pm

    Hahahah! Just when I though that it can’t get any worse, Micro$oft manages to prove me wrong.

  29. David said on November 4, 2016 at 4:09 pm

    Ads in free software? Whatever next

    1. Finvana said on November 4, 2016 at 5:37 pm

      free software? As far as I know windows is a paid operating system.

      1. Mr Matt said on November 5, 2016 at 3:15 pm

        OooOOOooooooo Finvana just #shrekt you son…in spirit of Halloween R.I.P.

        Ads are silly – yet I know so many people that love to look at them while they surf the web


        p.s. – hey! are there ads on ghacks? i never checked but this articler made me want to whitelist the site..forgot how great this site is…the small things in life i take for granted

Leave a Reply

Check the box to consent to your data being stored in line with the guidelines set out in our privacy policy

We love comments and welcome thoughtful and civilized discussion. Rudeness and personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please stay on-topic.
Please note that your comment may not appear immediately after you post it.