What you need to know
- Microsoft is reportedly removing the capability to earn Microsoft Rewards points for using Microsoft Edge daily.
- Initially, the issue seemed only to affect users based in the UK and Ireland, but it now appears more widespread.
- Multiple users have also flagged an issue with the Microsoft Rewards tally system, citing that it's taking longer than usual to reflect, forcing them to wait up to 6 seconds between searches.
Update 8 PM ET on 12/1/2023: A new report indicates that Microsoft has made major adjustments to how it awards points, dropping points for "other activities" from 10 to 2. Microsoft issued a statement indicating that the program is evolving, but there are no plans in play to discontinue the program indefinitely. Our full story.
If you're an avid user of Microsoft's services and products, you're likely familiar with Microsoft Rewards. If not, it's essentially a reward scheme run by Microsoft that lets users earn loyalty points for using the company's services like Bing for web searches and more.
But in a surprising turn of events, users might no longer be able to earn Microsoft Rewards loyalty points for using Microsoft Edge, according to a spot by Idle Sloth on X (formerly Twitter). The change started taking effect earlier this week when multiple users began flagging the issue across various social media platforms. Users could get up to 12 Microsoft Rewards loyalty points daily for using Microsoft Edge to browse the web.
(FYI) Microsoft has now removed the ability to earn daily points for using the Edge browser, which was 12 points per day in the UK & Ireland 🇬🇧🇮🇪Has it happened in your country?Today Yesterday pic.twitter.com/RTL1VQ4QFZNovember 29, 2023
This news comes exactly a week after it was reported that Microsoft is pulling the plug on its Xbox Rewards app, ultimately ending the weekly challenges and player streaks. Idle Sloth first pointed out that the issue had impacted users based in the UK and Ireland. However, it now seems the issue is widespread as more users from different regions also cite a similar issue.
Strangely enough, this isn't the only Microsoft Rewards-related issue affecting users. According to a spot by True Achievements, users now have to wait up to 6 seconds between searches for them to be tallied as part of their daily search points.
In hindsight, the points would ordinarily be reflected in your daily search total almost instantly. While I could not replicate the same results, there might be an issue with the program, like an unintended bug.
Impacting the Edge user base
Over the years, Microsoft has pushed a ton of features as well as updates to its Chromium-based browser Edge. While most users appreciate these neat additions, some simply view it as bloatware. As pointed out by several users expressing their frustrations over the changes, the reward scheme was the driving force pushing them to use the browser.
But it now seems that users might gradually transition to other browsers, significantly impacting Microsoft Edge's user base.
Are you still earning Microsoft Rewards points for using Edge? Let us know in the comments.
Get the Windows Central Newsletter
All the latest news, reviews, and guides for Windows and Xbox diehards.
Kevin Okemwa is a seasoned tech journalist based in Nairobi, Kenya with lots of experience covering the latest trends and developments in the industry. With a passion for innovation and a keen eye for detail, he has written for leading publications such as OnMSFT, MakeUseOf, and Windows Report, providing insightful analysis and breaking news on everything revolving around the Microsoft ecosystem. While AFK and not busy following the ever-emerging trends in tech, you can find him exploring the world or listening to music.
I was wondering whether they may have been forced to make these changes. As suggested in the article, the fact that you can earn points for doing so may be one of the main reasons that some people use Edge, which may have been considered anti-competitive by the EU or someone else. As for having to wait between searches, that reduces the likelihood that someone will just click a bunch of links to get points when they're not actually interested in the results of those searches. That may have been seen by some as artificially inflating Bing's search numbers.Reply
I've also noticed that, outside of the daily set, tasks that were previously worth 5 or 10 points are now worth 1 or 2, so fewer points there too.Reply
Note that I am receiving additional points by logging into the Microsoft Start app on my phone and also for viewing news items in it. I suspect that the Bing app does the same. They also recently had a special event where you got 5 points per day and then 100 points every 8th day and then 1000 points if you did that 12 times in a row. That seems to have finished and I didn't even notice, so I assume that I got my 1000 points. Last time I recall noticing, I was about 2/3 of the way there.
It's gone in Italy too, it's far slower to assign points even for searches from the Bing app, and rewards for a few challenges (that worked flawlessly even outside of Edge) have been lowered to 1-2 points tooReply
This is all sad, will have to see if I keep trying to earn points now. I had heard that the Xbox app on console was going away because it was getting integrated into a tab on Home. Maybe that is not going to happen now?Reply
Actually, I guess they are just evolving the rewards program. So, I guess standby for more changes: https://www.windowslatest.com/2023/11/30/microsoft-explains-changes-as-rewards-program-loses-daily-edge-points/Reply
Giving reward points is not anti-competitive. Many companies and stores give points for using their services/buying their products. And nothing is stopping Google from doing the same thing, they just choose not to. This move is most likely just part of Microsoft's major budget cutting measures so that they continue to make record profits (as we've seen with them slashing a huge chunk of their workforce, and only giving freebies if it doesn't cost them while getting something in return. They're becoming more anti-consumer, anti-people, and pro-enterprise, pro-AI every year.John McIlhinney said:I was wondering whether they may have been forced to make these changes. As suggested in the article, the fact that you can earn points for doing so may be one of the main reasons that some people use Edge, which may have been considered anti-competitive by the EU or someone else.
They refer to fairness there yet, while PC, Mobile and Edge points were worth 150, 100 and 20 points per day in the US, they were worth 90, 60 and 12 here in Australia. That suggests that they may be worth different amounts again in other countries. I guess what matters is what you can redeem for the points you get, so if rewards themselves cost more points in the US then it evens out. I'm not sure whether that's the case or not.rmark66 said:Actually, I guess they are just evolving the rewards program. So, I guess standby for more changes: https://www.windowslatest.com/2023/11/30/microsoft-explains-changes-as-rewards-program-loses-daily-edge-points/
I wasn't referring to points in general. I was specifically referring to points for using Edge, which is the default browser on Windows. The EU in particular is very touchy about things like that so there is every chance they could see that as anti-competitive. Google doing the same in Chrome when it is the default browser on Android may be viewed the same way. What the EU and other governing bodies consider anti-competitive is up to them, so you offering your opinion on the matter provides no real weight. I'm not saying that they have in this case but it wouldn't surprise me, given some of their other decisions in this area.Arun Topez said:Giving reward points is not anti-competitive. Many companies and stores give points for using their services/buying their products. And nothing is stopping Google from doing the same thing, they just choose not to.
That said, I think they may be placing restrictions on Microsoft regarding Edge on Windows, although I can't recall specifics. Maybe that was allowing it to be deleted or something like that.