Chances are that if you have bought a new Microsoft product in the last few years you will have got Microsoft Edge as your internet browser.
The Surface tablets, ill-fated Windows phones, and the latest version of Windows 10 all replaced the now-defunct Internet Explorer 11 with Edge.
That’s not a bad thing with recent Microsoft adverts claiming Edge runs up to 48% faster than Chrome.
When it comes to search engines, we all have our own personal favorites. It comes as no surprise that the default search engine used by Microsoft Edge is Bing; it is owned by them after all.
Cortana, Apple’s Siri, and Yahoo are also powered by Bing.
There may not be too much you can do about Cortana, Siri, or Yahoo but this guide will help you change your default search engine on your new Edge browser.
Google is, without doubt, the preferred search engine of the masses.
A recent breakdown of the market share of the top internet search engines showed Google held an impressive 90.31% share compared to the second-placed Bing at only 3.2%. Even with a slower growth rate Google is so far out in front, it’s unlikely anything will ever catch up.
Before we start changing your web browser’s search engine to Google, let’s see why it is such a popular choice.
Google was created back in 1997 by two American computer scientists, Larry Page and Sergey Brin.
Since its conception, Google has led the field in search engine advancements. Most users believe Google is not only the quickest but also the most reliable search engine there is.
Google has even been in The Oxford English Dictionary since 2006 as:
To use the Google search engine to find information on the Internet. trans. To search for information about (a person or thing) using the Google search engine.
You have probably used Google today at school, at work, at the library, or even on your mobile phone or iPad. Recent statistics report Google now gets over 40,000 search queries every second which equals 3.5 billion searches every day or 1.2 trillion searches a year globally.
So Google is popular, but why?
Much of Google’s popularity can be credited to its simplicity.
When Google was first released many of the existing search engines integrated their News pages, ads, and email pages on the same screen which ended in a cluttered mess. Google instead had a simple design of a header image of their logo and a search bar.
Another reason why so many people like Google is its accuracy.
Frequent updates to their search algorithms have added to the accuracy of search engine results pages (SERPS) over the years.
It’s an important reason Google became known as the most popular search engine in the world.
Although many now argue Bing or Yahoo is more accurate, most people can’t be bothered to switch from Google.
This brings us to the final point of the popularity of Google, its branding. Google is simple to say and features a memorable logo.
They even update the logo on the page for memorable occasions like Christmas or Independence Day.
Being so popular has made it the go-to site for many advertisers and publishers due to a large amount of traffic it gets every month.
The useful tools which Google provides help them to increase their site’s search engine optimization (SEO) and a rise in search rankings.
Google has also many other brands like YouTube, Picasa, and Android which further increase the public’s perception of them as a trustworthy company–it’s almost like Google Plus never happened!
But enough of the Google fan club, how do you change your default browser from that pesky Bing in Microsoft Edge to the favored Google? It’s quite different from the method you may have used in Internet Explorer or Safari but is still not too much fuss.
As we have already explained the default search engine in Microsoft Edge is now set as Bing, but if you prefer to change that to something else you can.
The Edge browser can make use of any search engine that adopts the OpenSearch standard as its default. I
instead of using the plug-in system that Internet Explorer favored, Edge features an option for changing your search engine to any you have visited.
When you go to a search engine web page that employs the OpenSearch standard to reveal its data, Edge takes a record and notes down the search engine information.
Not all search engines on the web yet support the OpenSearch standard but most are adding it. By visiting their pages you are simply making sure the search engine you want, in this case, Google, appears on the list of available options in the next step.
With Microsoft Edge open select the options menu which appears in the top right-hand corner of the screen as three consecutive dots. Scroll down and select “settings”.
With the settings panel opens, you need to scroll down until you see “View Advanced Settings” and click on that button.
Scroll down the Advanced Settings panel until you see the “Search in the address bar with” subheading.
If you haven’t previously changed it the word underneath will say “Bing”.
Under the Bing title, there should be a button that says “Change Search Engine”. Click on this button and it should bring up the most current list of available search providers.
Any search engines you have recently visited which use the OpenSearch standard should appear here. If it doesn’t simply visit the page again until it is “discovered by Microsoft Edge.
If you have tried to visit another search engine homepage, and it doesn’t appear here, maybe it doesn’t support OpenSearch yet.
Highlight the “Google Search (discovered)” and then click on the “Set as default” button.
After you have completed the above steps, your default search engine will now be Google. If at any time you want to change it back to Bing (WHY?), simply follow the above steps again but select Bing instead.
If you want to install any other search engine, you should first visit their homepage so the search engine populates the list of available options and select it using the above steps.
Typing a search in the URL address bar followed by ENTER will automatically search using your default search engine, in this case, Google.
Edge will also provide suggestions to what you type in a drop-down box as long as your search engine supports this and you have left it enabled in the Edge settings panel.
You can quickly start a new search in Edge by press Ctrl+L to go to the address bar on the page you are already on, or pressing Ctrl+T will open a new tab.
Remember you have only changed the default search engine for the Microsoft Edge browser.
If you perform a search from the Start menu of Windows or using Cortana, it will revert to searching the web using Bing.
The only way you can use Google on your Windows computer is through either Microsoft Edge or installing Chrome, you can’t change Cortana, she loves Bing.
Microsoft says NO! But they would say that, wouldn’t they?
They’re not going to stop you but their guide to changing the default search engine in Microsoft Edge begins by saying keeping Bing provides “an enhanced search experience in Microsoft Edge, including direct links to Windows 10 apps and more relevant suggestions from Cortana”.
Choosing Google is purely a personal preference in most cases.
If you own a web-based business or you are into blogging, you may find some of the online tools provided by Google will help raise your online presence.
Microsoft Edge in a very short time has gained a lot of popularity among users and critics alike.
Recent benchmark tests have seen it outperform the likes of Safari or Chrome and with future Firefox and Chrome extension support to come, Edge may become a large player in the browser market.
With over 90% of the market taken up, Google is unlikely to be caught by Bing anytime soon.
So if you are used to using Google, as they say, “if it ain’t broke, then don’t fix it!”
Marcus has a graduate degree in computer engineering and has many years of experience in cutting-edge technology research and development in both startups and Fortune 500 corporations. In his free time, he enjoys RTS gaming.
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