Microsoft ends Cortana's default browser work-a-round, restricts results to Edge browser

The Windows team appears to be clamping down on the extent to which users can tweak and circumvent the full extent of Cortana’s usefulness on the Windows 10 platform. As of today, Cortana on the desktop will be realigned to use with Windows 10’s Edge browser only.

For some users, Cortana’s link with the Edge browser seems as asynchronous as much as “Ok Google” and the Chrome browser are synonymous with one another. However, before today’s announcement, the Windows team offered certain SKU’s of Windows 10 to users (primarily businesses) that allowed a work-a-round that connected Cortana’s search results with a browser other than Edge.

Now it would seem that option is being removed from the table and for good reason, according to the Windows team.

Unfortunately, as Windows 10 has grown in adoption and usage, we have seen some software programs circumvent the design of Windows 10 and redirect you to search providers that were not designed to work with Cortana. The result is a compromised experience that is less reliable and predictable. The continuity of these types of task completion scenarios is disrupted if Cortana can’t depend on Bing as the search provider and Microsoft Edge as the browser. The only way we can confidently deliver this personalized, end-to-end search experience is through the integration of Cortana, Microsoft Edge, and Bing – all designed to do more for you.

Starting today, to ensure we can deliver the integrated search experience designed for Windows 10, Microsoft Edge will be the only browser that will launch when you search from the Cortana box.

Of course, you can continue to use your search engine and browser of choice on Windows 10.  They can be accessed and used as you always have.  You can easily use our centralized default manager to choose your preferred default program for everything from browsing to email, and you can configure the search default setting in Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer, which are available when you directly access those programs.”

The Windows team ends its pitch of the Edge browser with a promise that Windows 10 will provide users with great search results and a more personalized and reliable Cortana experience. In this catch-22, the Windows team ushering users to Edge will help them gather more search information from its users, but only if users find the current search results adequate to continuing using the Edge/Cortana solutions. With fewer users on utilizing Bing or the Edge browser, the Windows team has an uphill climb ahead of itself.

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