Business Technology

Wednesday 26 October 2016

Windows 10 'tricking Microsoft users into upgrades'

James Titcomb

Published 25/05/2016 | 11:34

Microsoft message
Microsoft message

Microsoft has been accused of tricking computer users into upgrading to Windows 10 after the exit button on a pop-up window activated the upgrade rather than cancelling it.

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The company has been encouraging users of older operating systems to upgrade to the latest version, despite Windows 7 and 8 still being supported and many users wanting to remain on earlier software.

Since Windows 10 is now labelled as a “recommended” update by Microsoft, Windows users who have security upgrades automatically enabled are receiving pop-up alerts saying that their PCs have updates scheduled.

Clicking the red “X” in the top right of the window – which typically means a pop-up will be dismissed – activates the scheduled upgrade.

MP Greg Hands, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, was among those who said he had been affected.

Windows 10, released last July, is a free upgrade for users, but from July 29 they will have to pay to upgrade. Microsoft is encouraging users to move onto the new software in an attempt to get as many people as possible on its latest system.

The company has been criticised in the past for pop-ups that appeared to give users two options: upgrade now, or upgrade later.

Users accused Microsoft of trickery and compared it to the spam tactics on internet pop-ups in which pressing what appear to be close buttons open another website.

The other main button on the pop-up is a large “OK” button that also accepts the upgrade. A smaller link to cancel or reschedule the upgrade sits in the middle of the window.

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