Because of this, Microsoft Windows keeps adding unpopular features

Microsoft plans to release two feature updates for its Windows operating systems later this year. Work on future feature updates also continues unhindered and the first builds of the 2023 feature update version are already available.

One of the recent changes to these 2023 Feature Update Preview builds is a new desktop search widget. The search widget is only enabled on a small number of test devices and adds a search form field to the Windows desktop. Users can use it to perform searches using Microsoft’s Bing search engine.

Web addresses can be typed directly to open websites, but all other input is redirected to Microsoft’s Bing search engine. All requests are opened in Microsoft’s Edge web browser when using the search widget.

Windows 11 search widget results

Microsoft Edge is used solely for the feature with no built-in option to change browser. Also, since there is no option to switch search engines, users are left with Bing search results when using the search widget on the device.

It’s easy enough to disable the search widget. All you have to do is right-click on the desktop, select “Show more options” and click on the “Show search” option.

An influx of unpopular features

Windows search highlights Windows 10

Microsoft has recently added several features to its Windows operating system that are unpopular or even considered useless by a segment of the user base.

In March 2022, Microsoft introduced the Search Highlight feature, which added information about the current day to Windows widgets and taskbar icons; The latter confused some users, who noticed suddenly changing icons on their taskbar that they hadn’t placed there.

Windows Widgets is another controversial feature. It adds Windows news, weather reports, stock information and other bits. Only first-party widgets are currently supported, including those supported by Microsoft MSN and Bing. Microsoft plans to extend Windows Widgets to support third-party additions in the future.

The search widget is the latest addition that has been the subject of controversy. Ashwin pointed out that it doesn’t add anything useful to the system, as the search may already be running using the operating system’s built-in search function.

So why is Microsoft adding these features to the operating system? Some users may find the functionality useful, especially if they have used more complicated means before.

One explanation for the influx of Bing and Microsoft Edge-related features is that Microsoft wants to increase usage of Edge, Bing, and other Microsoft properties. Increased usage also increases Microsoft’s revenue, as advertising revenue increases with usage. The features can also keep users longer in Microsoft’s ecosystem of services and applications.

The features are enabled by default as this ensures that the majority of users are exposed to them. Deactivation is just a few clicks away, but may not always be immediately apparent. For example, right-clicking the widgets icon does nothing; Instead, you need to right-click the taskbar, select Taskbar settings, and toggle the widget icon there to hide it.

Now you: Do you find any of the recently added Bing/MSN/Search features useful?


Because of this, Microsoft Windows keeps adding unpopular features

Product Name

Because of this, Microsoft Windows keeps adding unpopular features


Microsoft Adds Controversial Features to Windows: Here’s an explanation for the recent influx of Search, Bing, and MSN features.


Martin Brinkmann


Ghacks technology news



About Willie Ash

Check Also

Ubuntu Core brings real-time processing to Linux IoT

Most of you are familiar with Ubuntu as a desktop operating system; others know it …