How to set the default browser and search engine in Windows: instructions

Dmytro IvancheskulLife
How to change the default browser and search engine

Microsoft has managed to draw global attention to its Edge browser, which is bundled with all Windows operating systems, by releasing an updated Bing search engine enhanced with artificial intelligence. The public's interest was so great that even ardent users of the much more popular Google search engine and Chrome, Firefox and Safari browsers could not resist trying out the new product.

OBOZREVATEL explains how to set a new default browser in Windows and how to change the search engine to Bing. But first, let us explain what is so special about Microsoft.

Microsoft Edge and Bing with ChatGPT-4

When announcing the launch of its brainchild, Microsoft called it a "new day for search". The corporation has been trying to promote its search engine for 13 years, but as of the beginning of 2023, according to analysts, Bing is the second most popular search engine in the world. But there's nothing to be happy about, as its market share is a meagre 2.46%, while Google has grabbed 92.41%.

It is believed that the integration of artificial intelligence can help Microsoft to compete with Google. But time will tell whether this will happen.

For now, the AI function is somewhat limited, so those who want to try out the search of the future have to join a waiting list. Eventually, as promised, AI search will become available to everyone.

Artificial intelligence is built into the toolbar in the new Bing and, unlike ChatGPT, which was trained on data only until 2021, has up-to-date data and can process queries related to more recent events.

The difference from Google search is that you can not only search for information, but also ask for advice and get ideas generated by AI for you. In addition, you don't need to open various websites to see what the search engine offers you, because now the search page is divided into two parts. The left block offers options for answering your query from various sites, while the right block contains a pre-generated answer from the AI that is available to you in full without having to click on the link.

Bing can also occasionally offer users help with a well-formulated question that the search engine already has an answer for.

All extended answers have links to sources (in case the user wants to check everything out for themselves), as well as a separate feedback box. You can also ask the search engine to send the answer to your email.

The only thing new about the Edge browser is that it will now have an updated Bing built in.

How to change the default browser in Windows 10 and Windows 11

Usually Microsoft voluntarily forces its brainchild to be the default browser on a system. This was the case with Internet Explorer, and the same situation is true for Edge. However, the vast majority of users quickly switched to Chrome, Safari, or Firefox and, at best, left Edge without knowing how to get rid of it, or even uninstalled it completely. If the latter is the case, you can download it again on the official page.

To change the default browser in Windows 11:

  • select Start;
  • go to Settings;
  • then open Programs and go to Default Programs;
  • select Microsoft Edge;
  • next to Make Microsoft Edge the default browser, click Set as default.

To change the default browser in Windows 10

  • open Settings;
  • go to Default apps;
  • In the Web browser section, click the current default browser and change it to another one.

But even after you set Edge as your primary browser, the default search engine will still be the one you had before - most likely Google.

So here's what you'll need to do to change the default search engine:

Edge browser

Open Edge and tap the three-dot menu in the top right corner, then tap Settings. Next, tap the three-dash menu in the top-left corner and select Privacy, Search & Services.

Then scroll down to the Services section and select Address bar and search. From the drop-down menu next to the search engine you use in the address bar, select the search engine you want.

If you don't see your search engine, click Manage search engines, then click Add to select one.

Google Chrome

Open Google Chrome and click the three vertical dots next to your profile icon, then select Settings. In the menu on the left, select Search Engine.

Select an option from the drop-down list next to the search engine you use in the address bar.

To add a new search engine, select Manage Search Engines, click Add, and then fill in the Search Engine, Keyword, and URL fields with %s instead of the query.

Mozilla Firefox

Open Firefox and select the three vertical lines next to your profile icon, then select Options.

Select Search and choose another option from the drop-down list in the Default search engine section.

To add a new search engine, click the Find more search engines button at the bottom of the Search page. When you find the search engine you want, click Add to Firefox.


Open Safari and select the Safari and Preferences menus.

Select the drop-down menu next to Default search engine and choose the one you want to use as your default search engine.

Earlier, OBOZREVATEL also talked about the hidden features available to everyone on Windows and Mac.

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