Microsoft is adding more bloat to Edge with a Games button

Ashwin
Dec 28, 2021
Microsoft Edge
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27

Microsoft is adding a new feature to Edge, but you're probably not going to like it. The Chromium-based browser now has a games button, because why not?

Microsoft Edge is getting a games button and panel
The feature hasn't made it to the stable channel yet, but according to reddit user, Leopeva64-2, who spotted the option, is available in the Edge Canary Channel.

The person also shared some screenshots on the social website to highlight the feature. The toggle for the Games button is located in the Edge > Settings > Appearance page. It is not enabled by default, which is a good thing. Switching it on adds the button to the browser's toolbar. Clicking the said button, displays a modal that pulls content from MSN Games.

microsoft edge games panel

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That's what it is, the panel is a glorified web wrapper for Microsoft's online gaming portal. Great, that's just what we want, more bloat!

Microsoft Edge Games button in Canary Channel

I mean, take a look at this list, some of these are useful options. Do we really need a button that takes you to the MSN Games page to clutter the toolbar? That's what makes it bloat, right?

I have all three channels of Edge installed on my computer (for testing purposes), but the Games button isn't available for me in the latest version of Edge Canary, 99.0.1117.0. So, the option is probably only available for users in specific regions for soft-testing purposes, or maybe it has been pulled already like the "follow the website" feature that is sort of like an RSS feed.

If it provided something useful, like quick access to Steam, Epic Games, GOG, or  the Xbox GamePass store, I can kind of understand how that can be useful, a faster way to search game fronts might be handy. But, the screenshots tell a different story, and since I can't test the feature myself, I can't comment on how the Games button and the panel will work. I wouldn't be surprised if it displays notifications or ads for games, invites from other players, but this is pure speculation of course.

Where is Microsoft Edge heading?

When Microsoft introduced features like Vertical Tabs, Sleeping Tabs, etc., I thought that Edge browser was very impressive and modern. But the browser has been on a downward spiral for a while.

The Redmond company has been criticized for making it difficult for users to switch default apps in Windows 11. Even if you set a different browser as your default handler, web searches are forced to open in Edge. And then there is all the negative marketing that Microsoft has been involved with, it ridiculed Chrome as a dated browser, promoting itself when the user searches for rival browsers. Maybe they are doing all this deliberately, to take the heat away from Windows 11's performance issues? How's that for 4D chess?

Jokes aside, I can barely find a reason to recommend Edge these days. Sure, it is well optimized and hence is faster than other browsers on Windows, but that's about the only positive thing I have to say about it.

Do you remember when useful features like EPUB support were removed from the browser, despite having many votes on the Feedback Hub? We have seen various odd features arrive in Edge, like shopping coupons, a buy now pay and later option which is quite controversial, and now we have a nearly useless games button.

What do you think Microsoft will add to Edge next?

Summary
Microsoft Edge is getting a games button and panel, but why?
Article Name
Microsoft Edge is getting a games button and panel, but why?
Description
Microsoft is adding a new feature that you may never use, a Games panel.
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Ghacks Technology News
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Comments

  1. chillax said on December 28, 2021 at 2:40 pm
    Reply

    I wouldn’t even be surprised if Microsoft added next IE-like 3rd party toolbars like it was in the early 2000s.

    1. AngryBirds 365 said on December 29, 2021 at 4:35 am
      Reply

      Can’t wait for Brave to add this and tie it to my crypto-wallet

  2. Leopeva64 said on December 28, 2021 at 2:46 pm
    Reply

    “I wouldn’t be surprised if it displays notifications or ads for games”

    No, there are no ads or notifications.

    “…or maybe it has been pulled already like the “follow the website” feature that is sort of like an RSS feed.”

    Lol, both features just appeared in Edge Canary, apparently you have never heard of the “controlled feature roll-outs”…

    https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/articles/controlled-feature-roll-outs-in-microsoft-edge/m-p/763678

    .

  3. Baloff said on December 28, 2021 at 2:50 pm
    Reply

    It stepped over the edge and fell. It is now called Microsoft Abyss, and is still sinking to new and lower depths with every release. The only list it is climbing steadily and fast is the “software to avoid”-list. A sad joke of a browser by a delusional company. Recipe for disaster comedy.

  4. Paul(us) said on December 28, 2021 at 2:56 pm
    Reply

    “What do you think Microsoft will add to Edge next?”

    Quite simply.
    Microsoft does not want you to search with their almost mandatory browser anymore. This is because all (according to Microsoft) you want and need are already available with (inside) the browser.

  5. Bob B. said on December 28, 2021 at 3:58 pm
    Reply

    After my initial enthusiasm about the new Edge, I have now left it behind.

  6. KyleS said on December 28, 2021 at 4:09 pm
    Reply

    Microsoft will always be Microsoft. I just can’t believe that there were people that believed that Microsoft can make a decent browser. OK, it was good at first because it was as actually Chromium, somebody else’s work anyway, but the more Microsoft is.. working on it the more awful and bloatware it will become.

  7. Tom said on December 28, 2021 at 4:28 pm
    Reply

    “What do you think Microsoft will add to Edge next?”

    With the current disconnected idiots in charge of Edge? Probably “Microsoft gambling” built directly into the browser, or fullscreen ads every time you open the browser. Nothing would surprise me, it’s like Microsoft have hired a crappy TV shopping channel executive to run their browser team.

  8. Remedy said on December 28, 2021 at 4:51 pm
    Reply

    Where Microsoft is heading? This reeks of plans for Edge OS, to mimic Chrome OS. In a few years there will be overpriced EdgeBook laptops for sale, with weak and old hardware that require a Microsoft account, that no one will buy or use except that one youtuber they pay to show it..and eventually this idea too will rot and die, like it should. Just block Edge with the firewall, disable its services and delete all its scheduled tasks. Never use it for anything, ever. Tell all your friends and afmily, share on your social media accounts too what a piece of stinking garbage Microsoft Edge became. It’s bloatware, it’s spyware, it’s malware, it’s failware, it’s harmware and essentially it’s uselessware. Just like the coronavirus, it’s everyware. Kinda absurd that the biggest and most harmful threats on Windows, come from the operating system itself. Like cancer.

    1. ULBoom said on December 28, 2021 at 5:16 pm
      Reply

      You can uninstall the thing fairly easily. It’s Chrome, after all. Original Edge was like removing a nervous system without maiming or killing the body. Chredge is different.

  9. ULBoom said on December 28, 2021 at 5:12 pm
    Reply

    Maybe Edge will explode. It beached itself shortly after introduction.

    The whole “tech” thing has gone far beyond money grubbing corporations manipulating users, they’ve engulfed themselves. A parody of a parody of a parody becomes a lifeform?

    Even stranger, MS is considered, at least by Yahoo Finance’s annual Company of the Year Award, No. 1. WTF??? (At least FB is considered worst.)

    Two trillion in market capitalization; a company that big works for itself, managers are focused on internal politics while products just exist, “Mess with it if it might make money. We haven’t paid attention to browsers in 20 years.”

    https://finance.yahoo.com/news/meta-facebook-worst-company-of-the-year-yahoo-finance-165345819.html

    Humor is important.
    :)

    1. Anonymous said on December 28, 2021 at 9:40 pm
      Reply

      Marketing 101 – A company exists to make profit.

    2. Anonymous said on December 28, 2021 at 11:10 pm
      Reply

      Yahoo is Microsoft’s wh**re. They depend on them for their existence. Without Microsoft and Bing, Yahoo search will have to shut down. Yahoo serves Bing Ads too. Of course Yahoo Finance will rank Microsoft as No1.

  10. Anonymous said on December 28, 2021 at 9:38 pm
    Reply

    What is it that Microsoft gets from free games. If you do load one it pushes adverting for more free games. The list below is an example of some outwards firewall block which reveals how much a game will push your data. Running one game will also run other background apps that will leak data (unless you disable or uninstall the app).

    Destination IP
    104.94.145.9
    106.11.40.44
    106.11.43.142
    106.11.43.229
    117.18.237.29
    13.107.42.15
    13.86.37.202
    203.119.174.133
    23.214.88.74
    23.214.88.88
    23.49.210.156
    35.227.244.186
    35.241.52.229
    40.90.9.180
    40.91.79.208
    52.156.94.70
    59.82.29.246

    While you think you are playing alone, others are working out their moves.

  11. Anonymous said on December 28, 2021 at 10:31 pm
    Reply

    Microsoft Edge downward spiral trend begins. I enjoyed using Edge for a while, now I’m not sure its a good idea. It appears they are doing the same dark pattern nonsense as Windows 11. Anything to trick you into using their horrible web services.

  12. Neutrino said on December 28, 2021 at 11:04 pm
    Reply

    What do you expect from a company, which asks you to pay, in order to remove adds from Solitaire!

    Can’t make a decent browser to save their lives, and yet people call them “the big tech”… LMAO!

  13. Anonymous said on December 29, 2021 at 1:05 am
    Reply

    Damn, this is the last straw for me.
    Edge is faster than Chrome but now they’re bloating it to make it more and more slower.

  14. Anonymous said on December 29, 2021 at 2:33 am
    Reply

    OH so… Opera does it and it is okay, doesn’t get a full article calling it “bloat”, but Microsoft does it? Don’t you think that’s a little… dumb?
    Oh yeah… exactly, Opera created Opera GX to separate their “normal” browser from the “gaming” browser.

    So what, the people who call Opera GX a gimmick and stupid and “what is the point” are going to shut up now?

    Do you understand why Opera created GX? You either want those things in the browser or not, but don’t start insulting Opera for doing the same but different and separating their browsers brands or Microsoft for integrating it on the one browser they have. Which one will you pick then?

    Also, Opera does it because they own a game engine that is meant for 2D mobile games mostly in 2021… Microsoft owns game technology, and owns the OS chosen by gamers and game studios to develop for and has a popular console that millions of people buy and play with, so what is wrong about this?
    If people don’t want to use it the can ignore it like everything else, like when you don’t want to use bookmarks and you can just hide the bar and move on and never touch bookmarks page in your life? this is the same.

    Who cares, most people on this page are mostly people who don’t and won’t use Edge, but they have a big mouth and believe they are so smart and cool for supporting other weird companies that probably steal your data and spy you and damage the freedom of internet with their agendas just the same. But Microsoft is the worst… oh no, time to bash it and keep talking crap like people with no life usually do.

    I mean, ignore the gaming section and move on, eventually I bet there will be another panel for better gaming with the xbox cloud technology and offer the real games in your browser without the need of a console or a powerful computer.

    What a pathetic article wanting to cry for what “someone spotted” well and can be turned off and never be seen ever.

    1. Neutrino said on December 29, 2021 at 1:51 pm
      Reply

      Opera is not a mandatory part from the most used OS – an OS, which is required for running most of the existing software in the world.
      Hence, nobody cares about what it does. You use it or not, it’s a choice.
      That ain’t the case with Edge. If you remove it, the next OS update may crash or force you to revert it.

      On the other hand – regularly checking what the browser might have installed with the last update, or activated an undesirable option in the background w/o informing you, so that you turn it off – is the epitome of digital insanity.
      It appears Edge is more and more becoming like that mischievous kid that will draw a mustache on napping grandma, or set the cat on fire, if you leave it unsupervised for a minute.

      The game button is not a problem by itself – it indicates a symptom of sick corporate mentality.

  15. Frank said on December 29, 2021 at 3:43 am
    Reply

    /me laughs in Linux

  16. Jenz said on December 29, 2021 at 9:39 am
    Reply

    Martin Does Edge have a fingerprint protection extension

  17. John G. said on December 29, 2021 at 3:53 pm
    Reply

    The option can be disabled, so it’s not so important I think. They can add dozens of buttons or whatever options, because if all can be disabled there is no problem at all. One thing is to cut functionality and other very different is to add bloated options everywhere. :]

  18. AnLen said on December 29, 2021 at 6:36 pm
    Reply

    What a joke. ChrEdge is following the footsteps of original Edge and IE.
    Microsoft shopping, spying, pushing Bing most people don’t want to use, cringe deals with financing services, msn games with ads of course and who knows what else will pop up.
    People will soon start again using it to download a tolerable browser.
    Microsoft will have to launch another browser after some years and they will keep wondering why the can’t get markshare and why they keep failing so bad on this.

    1. Iron Heart said on December 29, 2021 at 8:43 pm
      Reply

      @AnLen

      Funny thing is, had they kept Edge somewhat clean, I believe they could have taken part of Chrome’s market share rather easily. But Microsoft prefers short term deals that result in annoyances for the users, driving them away, haha.

      Anyway, not my problem. I was never going to use the crap- and spyware anyway.

  19. common sense computing said on December 29, 2021 at 7:11 pm
    Reply

    Windows 10, not even once.

  20. Lawful Evil said on December 29, 2021 at 8:54 pm
    Reply

    Ewww how nasty

    I think firing a few Microsoft employees without pay who are responsible for this is the proper solution to fix this mess

  21. WinDumbOS said on January 20, 2022 at 3:56 pm
    Reply

    RIP Edge. So what to use now? All major browsers have turned into garbage.

    – Mozilla ignoring their users, removing customizations, fixing what’s not broken, and copying Chrome.

    – Google trying their best to spy on you, trying to remove ad blocking functionality, removing ways to modify cookies, and other defaults.

    – Microsoft keep adding more bloat and useless garbage, in addition to what Google is doing with chromium.

    – Apple’s browser is just useless garbage on its own, not even cross platform.

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