Links to Outlook, and soon Teams, will open by default in Microsoft Edge. Consumers aren’t too happy.


Microsoft Edge as Satan
By Vivaldi

Back in February, Microsoft announced a huge change for Microsoft 365 Outlook and Teams. Company said That Outlook, and future teams, will open browser links by default on Microsoft Edge. Microsoft later Explained Detail why it’s making such a change in the support article. Basically, the tech giant tried to make it clear that the decision was made to benefit users and their workflows by reducing task switching and improving focus. He wrote:

Why is Microsoft making this change?

  • To improve your experience between email and browsing — allowing you to see them both at the same time, in the same place. No more switching back and forth between apps.

  • To deliver a unique experience—At Microsoft, we strive to create the best customer experience in all of our products.

  • By opening browser links in Microsoft Edge to reduce task switching and improve workflow and focus, the original message in Outlook can be easily accessed, read, and shared with web content, using a matching authenticated profile. can be seen to answer.

IT admins and system admins became aware of this when they came across Microsoft 365 (M365) message center IDs MC548092 and MC541626 that detail the changes (via hume_reddit Reddit). Below is part of the message that explains how organizations will be affected by this change. However this message isn’t visible to every tenant Microsoft seems to be rolling it out gradually, and seems to be testing the waters before jumping in:

How it will affect your organization:

Web links to emails in the Outlook for Windows app will open alongside the email in Microsoft Edge so users can easily reference the link and the email without having to switch back and forth between apps. The email will open in the Outlook app in the Edge sidebar. Links will open in Microsoft Edge even if it is not the system default browser in Windows.

  • Only links set to open via a web browser are affected. Links that are set to open in the client app or within Outlook itself will continue to do so.
  • User experiences will vary depending on the policy configuration. Please see the next section.
  • Web links to all accounts in the Outlook for Windows app will open in Microsoft Edge, but the side-by-side experience is not currently available for non-AAD or non-MSA accounts.

Teams will not receive a change at this time.

Overall, by the looks of it, users, at least on Reddit, don’t seem too happy.

“Seems anti-competitive with IE and browser choices…” says. Post Box 134 On a Reddit thread. Meanwhile, another user Quite slow writes “This has been running with Outlook on Android for a while. It completely bypasses the default browser setting and opens all links in Edge. It’s annoying.” Bareilly Airborne Says “Just what I needed, a dozen more edge processes running that I didn’t ask for and don’t want.”

Outside of desktops, this change is already here on the mobile side of things. Explains M365 Message Center ID MC531738 (by alanjmcf on Reddit):

Currently users automatically open links from Outlook for iOS and Android in their default browser. This change will prompt users to select their browser instead. Users can choose their default browser if they prefer and configure this preference in their Outlook Mobile settings.

There is a silver lining to all of this, though. Microsoft allows users to opt out of this and select their default browser to open links as you can see in the image below.

Choosing a preferred default browser in Outlook

To do this, open Outlook, select File > Options > Advanced > Link Handling And select your favorite browser from the drop down menu.

Source: Reddit (1), (2), (3) through Petrie


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