Microsoft is always trying new stuff with its Edge browser, and its latest move is rather interesting. Rather than going through a retailer, Edge will offer a buy now, pay later (BNPL) option on the browser level.
“Usually, BNPL is offered in specific eCommerce websites like Target, Walmart. But now, Microsoft partners with 3rd party Zip (previously Quadpay) to offer a BNPL payment option at [the] browser level,” explains Microsoft’s Mei Hua in an announcement post spotted by Thurrott.com. “It means any purchase between $35 – $1,000 you make through Microsoft Edge can be split into 4 installments over 6 weeks.”
Now, when you’re on a shopping website looking to make a purchase, you’ll see the BNPL option right when you enter your credit card number. Of course, using Zip is possible without relying on the browser, but Microsoft says this way is quicker. “With BNPL in Edge, you can link your Microsoft account with your zip account with one click and then bypass sign in from Zip side. It can expedite the application process for you,” says Hua.
Microsoft says the new feature is currently in Edge Canary and Dev channels. It will be available by default to all users in Microsoft Edge release 96, which will either make you want to use Edge or make you run from it as fast as possible.
Based on the comments section of the announcement post, it seems users aren’t happy with the change, calling it bloatware. One Edge supporting user said, “Please, please stop bloating the browser with these revenue grabs. It’s like you’re recapitulating the worst IE browser extensions from the 90s/00s and installing them by default. If this continues, I’ll have to stop recommending Edge anymore, and I’ve been an Edge supporter for a while.”
We’ll have to see if the outcry stops Microsoft from implementing this feature into Edge, but for now, it looks like the browser is happy to give you an interest-free loan. The company already added coupons to the browser, so it’s pushing it in a shopping-focused direction.