Built-in shopping extension sends bad message

Contributor

A while back Edge added a built-in shopping extension. It claims "We'll automatically find you the best prices and coupons from across the web as you shop.We'll automatically find you the best prices and coupons from across the web as you shop."  This looks exactly the kind of spyware/crapware that tracks you all around the internet with zero regard for privacy. 

 

To me it is INCREDIBLE that Microsoft doesn't do ANY messaging on why this functionality would respect your privacy. If Edge is supposed to be "Like Chrome, but without violating your privacy", launching this kind of tool without explaining why it's not tracking your behavior is extremely short-sighted. Please do better!

13 Replies

@HotCakeX Thanks for the link. I still feel very strongly that this should be off by default, and any message of its availability should be accompanied by super clear info about how this can be done without affecting your privacy. Stuff like this being turned on during an update makes me stop recommending Edge and leave people on Chrome. I hope MS will reconsider their approach. 

@markshelton I'm sure the Shopping functionality is a nice feature for many, but the way it was introduced and (iirc) enabled during an update may rub some people the wrong way. If Edge is to be a privacy conscious counterpoint to Chrome, any new feature should be introduced with an accompanying message that states how the user's privacy is being respected.

 

IMO it is not enough to say "Here's a cool new feature, and if you care about your privacy, here's a link". Better would be "Here's a cool new feature, and unlike some competitors, we are putting privacy first, and this is how. .... For more information see the detailed privacy policy".

 

Until recently I was feeling pretty good about Edge, but the Shopping feature definitely looks like a turn for the worse. Please reconsider the privacy messaging in Edge, thanks! 

@ChromeRefugee Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback. I can assure you that privacy is a top priority for us when we're designing new features for Microsoft Edge. As you may have read in our Privacy Whitepaper, we've been careful to ensure the Shopping feature meets our high privacy standards. But to address your point more directly --- there is a difficult balancing act between creating a seamless experience and providing substantial privacy messaging in-product. We tested introducing this feature with a welcome message up-front but found that most people preferred to skip straight to coupons and price comparisons, rather than read about the feature (and its privacy considerations). I'm sorry that we didn't quite hit the mark on this feature for you, but I do appreciate your feedback and can assure you that we are actively exploring ways to make sure we effectively communicate how much we care about privacy on Microsoft Edge.

@markshelton Thanks for the response, much appreciated. Perhaps a balance can be struck where in the welcome message there is a simple link that states "Read how we protect your privacy". That same dialog should have a 'turn on' option for the new feature, showing the user that the feature was not turned on by default. Even if people don't click through the link, these two minor changes would immediately show that MS cares about privacy, which I think is important for Edge's reputation. 

Thanks @ChromeRefugee! Great suggestions. This is an area we are actively exploring. By the way -- have you had an opportunity to test out the feature yourself? Or did you find out how to toggle it off ok? Hope you're enjoying using Microsoft Edge!

@markshelton After your post and after reading the Privacy disclaimer (looked good, but I'd still like to see a statement along the lines of "MS will not resell your data, and will only share aggregate data with vendors" or so) I actually did give it a whirl when buying a guitar at Guitar Center. Edge told me that there was a coupon, but applying it Guitar Center told me that it was expired.

 

Due to the roundabout way that I did this (checked for a coupon using Edge in an incognito window after remembering and enabling the functionality, applied the coupon to the original cart) Edge probably didn't notice the coupon fail, so I didn't get to see how that part of the UX works (if any).

I did find that alot of coupons on the dell website were invalid or expired. Hope that is fixed.
It would be nice if you had a welcome message and press ok or not. Not forcing.
Thanks for trying it out @ChromeRefugee & @Deleted. Sorry that you found expired coupons. We can't always tell whether a coupon is expired -- it may just not eligible for whatever product you're trying to purchase through the retailer. However, we are looking at the success rate of our coupons over time and removing or de-prioritizing those that have a lower chance of success.
Yeah, please do make it more like honey and more accurately and suppor tmore sites please. Thank you and add to Canada.
What do you mean it can't tell if it is expired? Since I thought Edge shows this poup that shows it is checking the coupons that means it is checking if it works or not.

 


@ChromeRefugee wrote:

@markshelton After your post and after reading the Privacy disclaimer (looked good, but I'd still like to see a statement along the lines of "MS will not resell your data, and will only share aggregate data with vendors" or so) I actually did give it a whirl when buying a guitar at Guitar Center. Edge told me that there was a coupon, but applying it Guitar Center told me that it was expired.

 

Due to the roundabout way that I did this (checked for a coupon using Edge in an incognito window after remembering and enabling the functionality, applied the coupon to the original cart) Edge probably didn't notice the coupon fail, so I didn't get to see how that part of the UX works (if any).


Same for me, @ChromeRefugee. I tested this new feature on almost all the popular stores and tested Amazon a lot on different products. I also tested on Kohl's, Walmart, and Target. None of the coupons worked. The websites said something like, "This coupon is not valid."

yup, same for me.