Is Microsoft Purposefully Degrading/Crashing Internet Explorer to Bully Users into Upgrading to Windows 10 & Edge?

Is Microsoft Purposefully Degrading/Crashing Internet Explorer to Bully Users into Upgrading to Windows 10 & Edge?

Desperate measures to solve a festering market-share debacle?

Having spent years burning through any remaining goodwill among its users still clinging to Internet Explorer, Microsoft is apparently having problems getting them to use its Edge browser that is part of Windows 10. Even after about 15 months and three upgrades, the market share of Edge is still minuscule.

Over the past 30 days on, per Google Analytics, our readers used these five browsers the most:

  1. Chrome (41.4%)
  2. Safari (27.2%)
  3. Firefox (13.7%)
  4. Internet Explorer (10.1%)
  5. Edge (3.0%)

The bottom one is Microsoft’s new miracle browser that people refuse to use. And IE has dropped to 4th place with a 10% share. A few years ago, well, many years ago, before the arrival of Chrome, IE was the number one browser, having crushed Netscape during the First Browser War (being bundled with Windows did the trick).

According to Net Market Share, Edge 12, 13, and 14 combined have a market share of 5.2%. Everyone has slightly different market-share numbers. But at that level – whether it’s 3% or 5% doesn’t matter – Edge is an also-ran, something statistically insignificant, abandoned by burned-out IE users.

So Microsoft appears to go to extremes to force Windows users who still cling to their IEs to upgrade to Windows 10 and switch to Edge.

It had already gone to extremes to get Windows 7 users – a reasonably happy crowd, unlike the Windows 8 crowd – to upgrade for “free” to Windows 10. The inescapable desktop harassment-and-interdiction campaigns from Microsoft finally stopped a few months ago, and Windows 7 users could go about their business unmolested. The survivors all knew: If someone is trying to push you that hard to “upgrade” to a “free” program that took years and thousands of people to put together, it’s a sign that you are the product, and you’re going to get sold.

But when Microsoft threw in the towel on its Windows 10 harassment-and-interdiction campaign, at about that time, IE, never particularly stable, became very unstable. And it has gotten worse since.

I use Chrome, Firefox, and IE all day long, in Private Browsing mode, doing different things with different browsers, on two different computers, to make it confusing for internet tracking programs to collect my browsing and personal data. I want someone else to be the low-hanging fruit.

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Wolf Richter

In his cynical, tongue-in-cheek manner, he muses on WOLF STREET about economic, business, and financial issues, Wall Street shenanigans, complex entanglements, and other things, debacles, and opportunities that catch his eye in the US, Europe, Japan, and occasionally China. WOLF STREET is the successor to his first platform… TP-Title-7-small-200px …whose ghastly name he finally abandoned in July 2014. Here’s the story on that. Wolf lives in San Francisco. He has over twenty years of C-level operations experience, including turnarounds and a VC-funded startup. He earned his BA and MBA in Texas and his MA in Oklahoma, worked in both states for years, including a decade as General Manager and COO of a large Ford dealership and its subsidiaries. But one day, he quit and went to France for seven weeks to open himself up to new possibilities, which degenerated into a life-altering three-year journey across 100 countries on all continents, much of it overland. And it almost swallowed him up.