Microsoft has been facing a lot of heat lately over some of its practices with Windows and its Edge browser. These moves aren’t lost on other browser makers and Vivaldi’s CEO Jon von Tetzchner recently wrote about some other company’s tactics.
Vivaldi posted a rather lengthy blog entry on Microsoft tactics titled “Microsoft back to its old tricks to get an edge on the competition.” In the post, CEO Jon von Tetzchner called out the tactics Microsoft is using the get people to switch to its Edge browser, and as you can probably expect from the maker of a rival browser, he wasn’t happy.
This comes from Microsoft making it harder to switch its default browser and really pushing users to stick with Edge when they try to install another browser. As you might anticipate, von Tetzchner wanted to install Vivaldi, and when greeted with all the hoops Microsoft makes you jump through, he felt like he needed to speak out.
“After downloading and installing Vivaldi, I wanted to set it as my default browser. But Microsoft doesn’t give up that quickly. It does not want you to stop using Edge. So it makes basic things like changing the default browser difficult. This is on Windows 10. Windows 11 is even worse,” von Tetzchner noted in a blog post.
“Microsoft’s moves seem desperate. And familiar. It is clear they don’t want you to use other browsers,” von Tetzchner wrote. “This is not the behavior of a confident company developing a superior browser. It’s the behavior of a company openly abusing its powerful position to push people to use its inferior product, simply because it can. Do not pass Go, do not collect $200. Can you say monopoly?”
As far as what users should do, Vivaldi’s CEO says, “Most of all, don’t let Microsoft win at this stacked game. Persist until you can use your browser of choice on Windows — and help your friends or colleagues to do the same.”
It’ll be interesting to see if any antitrust investigations come from this, as Microsoft is undoubtedly walking the line between using the advantages it has and actual monopolistic practices.
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