Windows 11 simplifies the way to change default apps

Ever since the launch of Windows 10, Microsoft has been trying to “shove” its own apps, such as the Edge browser, down users’ throats. And changing default app associations for certain file types has been hidden deep in the operating system’s thick settings menu. Over time, following user complaints, Microsoft has simplified the process a bit, but it’s still pretty hard to find the necessary menu, especially for less technical people. Soon, however, Windows 11 users will have an easier way to change these associations with fewer clicks.

It’ll be easier to change the default browser from Edge to Chrome or Firefox

The process for changing associations in Windows 11 has been changed from Windows 10, and it’s still users who have convinced Microsoft to simplify menus once again. A future update in Windows 11 will introduce so-called “URI links”. These will allow apps to be able to send the user with a single click directly to the settings menu that allows them to change that setting. That way, if you install a new browser, you won’t have to manually go into Settings> Apps> Default Apps to find the Web Browser section and switch from Edge to the new browser. With one click, the settings menu will open to the exact section you’re looking for to change the app.

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edge default app
photo: Microsoft

This announcement was made in an article on Microsoft’s official blog, where the company says it is trying to reaffirm its promise that it will give users more control over the Windows operating system experience. This will also come with new dialogs for attaching new apps to the taskbar or desktop. If an app tries to put its shortcut on the taskbar automatically, you’ll be asked if you want to provide such permissions.

taskbar permission
photo: Microsoft

For starters, these capabilities are available in the Windows Insider Dev Channel. After the testing period, probably in a few weeks or even months, these features will be integrated into the final version of Windows 11.

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