If you got a fresh install of windows 11 you probably would have noticed that changing your default browser is no longer as simple as it was before.
Previously as you opened the desired browser a message prompt would pop up asking if you would like to set the current browser as default,
Clicking on it would lead to the settings app where you could change it in one more click.
Instead in an effort to promote “Edge” over their competitors, Microsoft has made changing the default browser from a simple procedure into a long and arduous process thus requiring some annoying extra steps as shown below.
Changing Default Browser
In order to change the default browser to a browser of your liking:
- Press the Windows key, type in settings, and open the Settings app
- From there navigate to apps on the left toolbar and then default apps
- Under app lists, type in the name of the default browser you are going to use which in our case is Google Chrome.
- After Clicking on your desired browser you will see a page with many different file types, This is where you will have to tediously choose your desired browser for each individual type of file.
- Once you have changed all the defaults to your desired browser it should look something like this
Why is changing Browser such a pain on Windows 11?
There are two possible answers for this, one of them being that it was an attempted fix for a previous issue regarding default browsers many users faced back in windows 10. You may have noticed that despite changing your default browser windows 10 would open PDF files through the edge, this was due to the fact that edge was still registered as the default program for handling ﬁles with the .pdf extension. Thus by creating a system where each individual file type can be customized this problem is solved albeit in a very tedious and cumbersome way. One silver lining to this system is that users can have different browsers for different types of files based on their preferences potentially leading to a more efficient custom setup.
The other answer is that by making changing our default browser such a difficult process Microsoft is trying to discourage users from switching in order to gain an unfair competitive advantage on the browser market.