Microsoft’s Windows 10 policies are once again angering customers. This time, the company’s decision to advertise on the platform has led to complaints. Microsoft is using Windows 10 to actively promote several subscriptions for its services, including Office 365 and OneDrive. Users have taken to social media and revealed disgust at the action.
It seems the ad notifications are set to default in Windows 10 builds. Microsoft is promoting a new Office 365 and OneDrive bundle. I don’t particularly want to repeat the offer here, because then Microsoft is getting even more (free) advertising.
However, you can check out the screenshot (courtesy of Thurrott) below to see what the promotion is.
Needless to say, Microsoft is getting some heat for this decision. Redditors have been calling the company out on this tactic and pointing out that even those with existing Office 365 subs are seeing the advertisement.
Admittedly, there are two sides to the fence with this subject. Some find the practice wrong and unnecessary and think it cheapens the OS. Then there are others who are either not bothered by the ads or see them as normal. It depends whether you think these are ads or sync notifications.
To Promote or Not to Promote?
Personally, I am in between. It is not devastating to me that Microsoft promotes its services within Windows 10. However, it is a bit cheeky of the company, and here’s why:
Most platforms advertise within apps, services, and even around the general OS. Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS have no issues with advertising services, and users don’t care at all. Why is it ok for those platforms, but not Windows? Well, if Windows 10 was a free-to-use platform, then ads would be viewed as necessary.
However, Microsoft already charges for the platform. Perhaps if users could choose between a paid version without ads or a discounted version with, there would be less frustration.
Either way, it is perhaps most important to know that users can actually remove these ads entirely. It does involve some digging around in the File Explorer’s advanced settings, but the ad notifications can be turned off.
Microsoft has rather cleverly/cheekily (you can decide which) hidden the toggle behind a vague ‘show sync provider notifications’ option. Change this to off and you will eliminate the ad notifications.