Microsoft really wants people to install and use its products on their computers. Now, beyond the different kinds of Start menu ads plaguing Windows 10, users have to contend with pop-up ads for Redmond-made products if they have the Chrome browser installed on their PC.
A strange decision from Microsoft
Microsoft has been promoting Edge to Chrome users over the past several months. Recently it promoted the security features of Edge to Chrome and Firefox users. Now if you are a Chrome user, you will likely get a pop-up asking you to install Microsoft’s Personal Shopping Assistant extension for Chrome.
According to Myce, an ad for the extension can be seen hovering over the browser’s familiar icon when Chrome is pinned to the taskbar. The add-on has been around for about a year, but only a recent update has been triggering the spam.
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This is actually a strange decision. Promoting the features of Windows 10 makes sense, but promoting a simple Chrome extension is really pushing the limits. It would have been a completely different story if it was something genuinely useful, but this is a bad price comparison app. Thurrott noted that third-party developers could get access to this, and the operating system would be overrun with the same kind of garbage.
Going forward, a scenario could see Microsoft charge more for an ad-free version of Windows, notes Engadget. Such a move will be similar to what Amazon did with Kindle devices and YouTube did with YouTube Red.
Chrome Web Store rife with complaints about the extension
The Chrome Web Store is filled with complaints about the extension. For instance, one user posted a review on the Personal Shopping Assistant extension complaining about how Microsoft is essentially spamming users.
The user wrote, “Installed this so I could leave this review. I’m uninstalling it right after. Microsoft Windows 10 popped up a notification when I launched Chrome tonight, telling me I should install this extension.”
“Basically, they forced a popup ad into my Windows experience, and interfered with my use of my computer to push this waste of time onto me. They should be banned from the Chrome store because of this,” the user complained.
There were other users who complained about the same issue on the Chrome Web Store. In the future, we might see more users chiming in with the same thing as Microsoft begins deploying the new pop-up out to other people.