Chrome Installer has been removed from the Microsoft Store

Earlier today, a Google-developed app showed up in the Microsoft Store called Chrome Installer. The app was nothing more than a web wrapper that uses the default browser to download the installation package for the company's Chrome browser. In case you're wondering, there's no magic there that gets it running on Windows 10 S, so it provides no additional functionality from what you'll get by downloading it through Edge.

Unsurprisingly, that app has since been removed by Microsoft.

"We have removed the Google Chrome Installer App from Microsoft Store, as it violates our Microsoft Store policies," a spokesperson for the company said in a statement to Neowin. "These policies exist to ensure all Microsoft Store apps are functional and provide unique and distinct value to our customers within the app, and help protect the security of our customers. We welcome Google to build a Microsoft Store browser app compliant with our Microsoft Store policies."

Indeed, the app is built for the sole purpose of downloading a separate app from the web, something that Microsoft can't check to meet its security standards in the Store. The company has also said previously that if Google packaged Chrome using the Desktop Bridge and submitted it to the Store, that wouldn't be accepted either.

The reason for this is because the Microsoft Store requires that any browser use the EdgeHTML rendering engine, and Google's Chrome uses its own Blink engine. Of course, Microsoft's Edge browser is available on Android, and Google does allow it in the Play Store, but for that app, Microsoft chose to use Blink, even though it's not a requirement on Android.

Of course, if Microsoft had stuck with EdgeHTML on Android, it would be awfully hypocritical of the company to not allow other engines on Windows, and could probably open the door for legal disputes.

Either way, if Google wants to make its way into the Microsoft Store, it's going to have to find another way.

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69 Comments - Add comment

A lot of so called "policy" seems to fly in the face of actual customer satisfaction. Businesses seem to believe that crutch called policy is actually a plausible excuse to behave badly. Another one is "its a rule we have", otherwise known as policy.

They just might as well say we don't want to help you.

A lot of so called "policy" seems to fly in the face of actual customer satisfaction. Businesses seem to believe that crutch called policy is actually a plausible excuse to behave badly. Another one is "its a rule we have", otherwise known as policy.

They just might as well say we don't want to help you.

Yeah, maybe if Google didn't poop all over Windows customers not using Chrome for years they may have been accepted a little better.

Why should Microsoft allow competing browsers?

Easy, to make their store relevant and useful to their USERS while allowing a safe way to install any software they may want to use. Why just browsers anyway? They allow other competing products. Hell, why not just disallow any non-Microsoft software in their store?

Why should Microsoft allow competing browsers?

This may sound immature, but Google does.

I know right, it's not like Google Blocked Internet explorer and Edge from functionng on YouTube properly for over a year at all. Nor is it like they constantly bombard you with prompts to install Chrome. nope. Google are not bad at all.
I mean, if they decided to drive around everyone's street taking pictures of your home and property while hacking your wireless network and scanning all your files and stuff, maybe that'd be a little worrying... but it's ok, it's not like they continue to track your phone's location even after you disable tracking...
Lucky for us, Google are the good guys they are prompt at fixing and pushing out patches to Android across all the android devices in a timely manner and will tell us end users immediately when there is a security issue with Windows even before there is a fix so we can be ready to protect ourselves.
This post was immature, but so is Google.

Why should Microsoft allow competing browsers?

If they want more people to use the store then it would not be a bad idea, the problem is browsers in the store will still have to use the engine as Edge, so no point really.

Google have different browsers in their store, granted i do not think you can use a different browsers on a chromebook, but that is why it is called a chrome book and it is the way it works.

Makes no odds to me as I only been in the store 2 or 3 times.

don't get me wrong, Google should never have put that app in the store, but then Ms should not have allowed it.

Why should Microsoft allow competing browsers?

If they want more people to use the store then it would not be a bad idea, the problem is browsers in the store will still have to use the engine as Edge, so no point really.

Google have different browsers in their store, granted i do not think you can use a different browsers on a chromebook, but that is why it is called a chrome book and it is the way it works.

Makes no odds to me as I only been in the store 2 or 3 times.

don't get me wrong, Google should never have put that app in the store, but then Ms should not have allowed it.

Yes you can use whatever browser you want on any Chromebook that supports the Play store which is now most and new ones.

Google does not limit that just like they do not on Android.

No... Shame on Microsoft for allowing this listing to begin with AND not allowing competing browsers in their store.

Microsoft DO allow competing browsers, funny since Edge isn't available on the store anyway, developers just have to adhere to the policies set out by Microsoft. They either use the EdgeHTML rendering engine OR they port their desktop browser using Project Centennial meaning they can use whatever rendering engine they choose. If others follow those policies why should Google get special treatment.

Why should Microsoft allow competing browsers?

If they want more people to use the store then it would not be a bad idea, the problem is browsers in the store will still have to use the engine as Edge, so no point really.

Google have different browsers in their store, granted i do not think you can use a different browsers on a chromebook, but that is why it is called a chrome book and it is the way it works.

Makes no odds to me as I only been in the store 2 or 3 times.

don't get me wrong, Google should never have put that app in the store, but then Ms should not have allowed it.

Ah, so because Chromebooks have Chrome in the name then restricting browser choice is fine then?

Maybe Microsoft should have called the Surface range Edge, Edge Book and Edge Laptop and then restricting the browser to Edge would be perfectly fine.

Why should Microsoft allow competing browsers?

This may sound immature, but Google does.

I know right, it's not like Google Blocked Internet explorer and Edge from functionng on YouTube properly for over a year at all. Nor is it like they constantly bombard you with prompts to install Chrome. nope. Google are not bad at all.
I mean, if they decided to drive around everyone's street taking pictures of your home and property while hacking your wireless network and scanning all your files and stuff, maybe that'd be a little worrying... but it's ok, it's not like they continue to track your phone's location even after you disable tracking...
Lucky for us, Google are the good guys they are prompt at fixing and pushing out patches to Android across all the android devices in a timely manner and will tell us end users immediately when there is a security issue with Windows even before there is a fix so we can be ready to protect ourselves.
This post was immature, but so is Google.

Just a couple of points to show equivalency:
- It's not google's fault MS can't write half decent code.
- msn.com prompts me to install/use edge, as does my operating system (which fights me when I try and change my default browser).
- Microsoft exhibits the same streetview based behavior, except now through subsidiaries.
- You saw what happened to Windows Phone/Mobile.
- This pissing contest isn't new.

I'm not trying to say Microsoft is worse or that Google is better. I'm saying they're equally as ###### (crappy, cause Neowin thought the alternative was a bad word) and frankly it's down to preference at this point.

I get excited when I see the small, open-source guys make something cool or big. Then I get sad when one of these behemoths of organizations open up and swallow them.

No... Shame on Microsoft for allowing this listing to begin with AND not allowing competing browsers in their store.

Microsoft DO allow competing browsers, funny since Edge isn't available on the store anyway, developers just have to adhere to the policies set out by Microsoft. They either use the EdgeHTML rendering engine OR they port their desktop browser using Project Centennial meaning they can use whatever rendering engine they choose. If others follow those policies why should Google get special treatment.

Yeah, no they don't... The rendering engine is a big part of what makes a browser unique. Firefox is my browser and would never use a Microsoft store version (without Quantum) when can use the real win32 version of it. That's why there no Chrome or Firefox in the Microsoft store. Apple can get away it (but it's still not right) because their platform matters to some people. The Microsoft store is just irrelevant for most people.

FYI Edge is not in the store because it's coupled with Windows 10. #facepalm

Why should Microsoft allow competing browsers?

If they want more people to use the store then it would not be a bad idea, the problem is browsers in the store will still have to use the engine as Edge, so no point really.

Google have different browsers in their store, granted i do not think you can use a different browsers on a chromebook, but that is why it is called a chrome book and it is the way it works.

Makes no odds to me as I only been in the store 2 or 3 times.

don't get me wrong, Google should never have put that app in the store, but then Ms should not have allowed it.

Ah, so because Chromebooks have Chrome in the name then restricting browser choice is fine then?

Maybe Microsoft should have called the Surface range Edge, Edge Book and Edge Laptop and then restricting the browser to Edge would be perfectly fine.

Seriously? Your argument is the Chromebook name restricts browser choice? ChromeOS is not a full OS (and I have no use for it myself) like Windows so the comparison is ridiculous BUT one can install any browser they like from the Play Store on a Chromebook which Google DOES NOT restrict at all.

Why should Microsoft allow competing browsers?

If they want more people to use the store then it would not be a bad idea, the problem is browsers in the store will still have to use the engine as Edge, so no point really.

Google have different browsers in their store, granted i do not think you can use a different browsers on a chromebook, but that is why it is called a chrome book and it is the way it works.

Makes no odds to me as I only been in the store 2 or 3 times.

don't get me wrong, Google should never have put that app in the store, but then Ms should not have allowed it.

Ah, so because Chromebooks have Chrome in the name then restricting browser choice is fine then?

Maybe Microsoft should have called the Surface range Edge, Edge Book and Edge Laptop and then restricting the browser to Edge would be perfectly fine.

Seriously? Your argument is the Chromebook name restricts browser choice? ChromeOS is not a full OS (and I have no use for it myself) like Windows so the comparison is ridiculous BUT one can install any browser they like from the Play Store on a Chromebook which Google DOES NOT restrict at all.

I did not realise that chrombook had other browsers, the problem is Chromebook is a browser. i am not saying it is a bad thing for the chromebook even if they did as that is the way it is deigned. i was just saying

Why should Microsoft allow competing browsers?

If they want more people to use the store then it would not be a bad idea, the problem is browsers in the store will still have to use the engine as Edge, so no point really.

Google have different browsers in their store, granted i do not think you can use a different browsers on a chromebook, but that is why it is called a chrome book and it is the way it works.

Makes no odds to me as I only been in the store 2 or 3 times.

don't get me wrong, Google should never have put that app in the store, but then Ms should not have allowed it.

Ah, so because Chromebooks have Chrome in the name then restricting browser choice is fine then?

Maybe Microsoft should have called the Surface range Edge, Edge Book and Edge Laptop and then restricting the browser to Edge would be perfectly fine.

Chromebooks work in a different way to other machines, with chromebooks everything is done in the browser. With Windows all this restricted apps stuff is just an afterthought.

I did not realise that chrombook had other browsers, the problem is Chromebook is a browser. i am not saying it is a bad thing for the chromebook even if they did as that is the way it is deigned. i was just saying

You didn't know Chromebooks can run Android apps now??? Regardless, I am not sure why this discussion was sidetracked to Chromebooks.

I did not realise that chrombook had other browsers, the problem is Chromebook is a browser. i am not saying it is a bad thing for the chromebook even if they did as that is the way it is deigned. i was just saying

You didn't know Chromebooks can run Android apps now??? Regardless, I am not sure why this discussion was sidetracked to Chromebooks.

i know they can run android apps, it just did register with me that browsers are Android apps default_smile.png Been a long couple of weeks. Also, the people i know that have chrome books can not run Android apps on them, apart from maybe one who have recently got a new chromebook.

Talking about chromebooks, I work in retail and we have a delivery of click and collect stuff every day and we get a fair amount of chromebooks being delivered. Ok, some of them may end up being returned, but even if half did, that would still leave a lot of chromebooks out there, we get a couple each day at least.

No... Shame on Microsoft for allowing this listing to begin with AND not allowing competing browsers in their store.

Microsoft's automated process for app approvals is frankly terrible. I'm sure it was removed as soon as a real person saw it.

But the company does allow competing browsers in the Store; they just need to use the EdgeHTML rendering engine, similar to how all iOS browsers need to use WebKit.

Why should Microsoft allow competing browsers?

If they want more people to use the store then it would not be a bad idea, the problem is browsers in the store will still have to use the engine as Edge, so no point really.

Google have different browsers in their store, granted i do not think you can use a different browsers on a chromebook, but that is why it is called a chrome book and it is the way it works.

Makes no odds to me as I only been in the store 2 or 3 times.

don't get me wrong, Google should never have put that app in the store, but then Ms should not have allowed it.

Ah, so because Chromebooks have Chrome in the name then restricting browser choice is fine then?

Maybe Microsoft should have called the Surface range Edge, Edge Book and Edge Laptop and then restricting the browser to Edge would be perfectly fine.

Can you not run Edge on Chrome OS?

No... Shame on Microsoft for allowing this listing to begin with AND not allowing competing browsers in their store.

Microsoft's automated process for app approvals is frankly terrible. I'm sure it was removed as soon as a real person saw it.

But the company does allow competing browsers in the Store; they just need to use the EdgeHTML rendering engine, similar to how all iOS browsers need to use WebKit.

Wow! Another person who mentioned that browsers are allowed on the Microsoft Store if they use the EdgeHTML rendering engine. That's the problem! You didn't read the whole discussion before commenting huh? Like most people, I am not interested in a Chrome or Firefox that doesn't use it's native engine. Apparently, Google and Mozilla feel the same way so there are no store versions of their browsers. A Microsoft Store failure!

Yes, Apple does the same thing with the App Store which also gets criticized. The contrast to all this is the Play Store which does actually allow any browser.

Why is this so hard to understand?

No... Shame on Microsoft for allowing this listing to begin with AND not allowing competing browsers in their store.

Microsoft's automated process for app approvals is frankly terrible. I'm sure it was removed as soon as a real person saw it.

But the company does allow competing browsers in the Store; they just need to use the EdgeHTML rendering engine, similar to how all iOS browsers need to use WebKit.

Wow! Another person who mentioned that browsers are allowed on the Microsoft Store if they use the EdgeHTML rendering engine. That's the problem! You didn't read the whole discussion before commenting huh? Like most people, I am not interested in a Chrome or Firefox that doesn't use it's native engine. Apparently, Google and Mozilla feel the same way so there are no store versions of their browsers. A Microsoft Store failure!

Yes, Apple does the same thing with the App Store which also gets criticized. The contrast to all this is the Play Store which does actually allow any browser.

Why is this so hard to understand?

What annoys ME with this is MS has started allowing Win32 apps in the store but they're choosing to not even allow THIS option for web browsers. Double standards like this annoy me.

No... Shame on Microsoft for allowing this listing to begin with AND not allowing competing browsers in their store.

Microsoft's automated process for app approvals is frankly terrible. I'm sure it was removed as soon as a real person saw it.

But the company does allow competing browsers in the Store; they just need to use the EdgeHTML rendering engine, similar to how all iOS browsers need to use WebKit.

Wow! Another person who mentioned that browsers are allowed on the Microsoft Store if they use the EdgeHTML rendering engine. That's the problem! You didn't read the whole discussion before commenting huh? Like most people, I am not interested in a Chrome or Firefox that doesn't use it's native engine. Apparently, Google and Mozilla feel the same way so there are no store versions of their browsers. A Microsoft Store failure!

Yes, Apple does the same thing with the App Store which also gets criticized. The contrast to all this is the Play Store which does actually allow any browser.

Why is this so hard to understand?

What annoys ME with this is MS has started allowing Win32 apps in the store but they're choosing to not even allow THIS option for web browsers. Double standards like this annoy me.

Yep, it makes no sense and sounds kinda anti-competitive to me.

"Of course, if Microsoft had stuck with EdgeHTML on Android, it would be awfully hypocritical of the company to not allow other engines on Windows, and could probably open the door for legal disputes."

How exactly would that be hypocritical? WinRT simply doesn't allow another engine to be used, end of story. Why is this hypocritical if Microsoft does allow it for Win32 apps; it can be done, just not if you want it in the Store.

"Of course, if Microsoft had stuck with EdgeHTML on Android, it would be awfully hypocritical of the company to not allow other engines on Windows, and could probably open the door for legal disputes."

How exactly would that be hypocritical? WinRT simply doesn't allow another engine to be used, end of story. Why is this hypocritical if Microsoft does allow it for Win32 apps; it can be done, just not if you want it in the Store.

WinRT is not that relevant, there's hardly any devices, and it's hard to buy one these days... Search for it on Amazon and you can only find charging cables

WinRT is the app framework that UWP is based off of. They aren’t talking about Windows RT.

It's possible to code an HTML rendering engine in UWP. Yet for some reason they require Edge's engine. On Android, Firefox uses its own engine. No reason MS couldn't do the same as well as allow other engines on WS.

"Of course, if Microsoft had stuck with EdgeHTML on Android, it would be awfully hypocritical of the company to not allow other engines on Windows, and could probably open the door for legal disputes."

How exactly would that be hypocritical? WinRT simply doesn't allow another engine to be used, end of story. Why is this hypocritical if Microsoft does allow it for Win32 apps; it can be done, just not if you want it in the Store.

Except not all Store apps are WinRT, right? Google could surely use the Desktop App Converter to bring Chrome to the Store, and there shouldn't be any limitations to doing that other than Microsoft's policies. I don't think that anyone is suggesting that Google would build a UWP version of Chrome with Blink.

Of course, if Microsoft had stuck with EdgeHTML on Android, it would be awfully hypocritical of the company to not allow other engines on Windows, and could probably open the door for legal disputes.

But they didn't, so this paragraph is useless and redundant.

I don't really see why it matters what rendering engine a 3rd party browser on an app store uses?

Then again as long as the browser someone is using is up to date i don't really care, use whatever works best for you.

I don't really see why it matters what rendering engine a 3rd party browser on an app store uses?

Then again as long as the browser someone is using is up to date i don't really care, use whatever works best for you.

One word... Security

Microsoft's Store is a guarantee of 'secure' software... Anything that can create non-secure entry points prevents Microsoft from deeming the software secure.

This policy mainly exists for software that is not a browser, but uses a browser engine to display content. Even if originally 'secure' these embedded engines are usually not updated.

I don't really see why it matters what rendering engine a 3rd party browser on an app store uses?

Then again as long as the browser someone is using is up to date i don't really care, use whatever works best for you.

It matters because Chrome is secure and Edge is not. So we would get some of the security problems with Edge on Chrome which is the last thing Google wants.

One word... Security

Microsoft's Store is a guarantee of 'secure' software... Anything that can create non-secure entry points prevents Microsoft from deeming the software secure.

This policy mainly exists for software that is not a browser, but uses a browser engine to display content. Even if originally 'secure' these embedded engines are usually not updated.

And yet Windows itself is one the most insecure operating system around, always have been and always will be. MS would not know what security is if it bit them on the backside.

Microsoft should:

- Allow other browsers in the store for non-S distributions of Windows (e.g., Windows 10 Pro).

- Block other browsers in the store for S-based distributions of Windows (e.g., Windows 10 S).

Microsoft should:

- Allow other browsers in the store for non-S distributions of Windows (e.g., Windows 10 Pro).

- Block other browsers in the store for S-based distributions of Windows (e.g., Windows 10 S).

...which is almost exactly what they are doing.

For Non-S
If the app is UWP ground up, only use EdgeHTML.
If the app is desktop converter packaged, others browsers are allowed.

For S
Other browsers are outright blocked.

Microsoft should:

- Allow other browsers in the store for non-S distributions of Windows (e.g., Windows 10 Pro).

- Block other browsers in the store for S-based distributions of Windows (e.g., Windows 10 S).

Windows RT effectively died because of closed platform. Windows S will follow same fate.

...which is almost exactly what they are doing.

For Non-S
If the app is UWP ground up, only use EdgeHTML.
If the app is desktop converter packaged, others browsers are allowed.

For S
Other browsers are outright blocked.

Partially correct, if it's a UWP or converted via Project Centennial then S based devices can still use them as they are store apps.

...which is almost exactly what they are doing.

For Non-S
If the app is UWP ground up, only use EdgeHTML.
If the app is desktop converter packaged, others browsers are allowed.

For S
Other browsers are outright blocked.

Partially correct, if it's a UWP or converted via Project Centennial then S based devices can still use them as they are store apps.

Is it? I was under the impression that Windows 10 S only accepts pure UWP. Thanks. This makes it much better for Windows S adoption.

Is it? I was under the impression that Windows 10 S only accepts pure UWP. Thanks. This makes it much better for Windows S adoption.

Not being a developer myself I was under the impression that as long as it was on the store S based devices could use it. I believe that Spotify can be used on Windows 10 S and when iTunes shows up S based devices can use it as well.

But you can still download the totally legit 'Chrome-O' (https://www.microsoft.com/store/productId/9P662WDFQKWF) and 'Best Browser - Search For Google' (https://www.microsoft.com/store/productId/9PDDXCL9RT56) so all's good right?

Did you report them to bring them to Microsoft's attention, or just mention them here to make MS look bad? Rulebreaking apps make it through on all the stores. That's why the stores allow you to report apps - because no evaluation process is foolproof.

It looks like someone did report those apps. Both links are dead as of 12/20 9 AM. 2 more rulebreaking, probably fake apps are gone, so yes, all is good.

I was wrong...

Microsoft is cracking down on their policies more than I was aware.

I don't think this is a shot back at Google, but would be understood considering how many App notification removals Microsoft had to deal with in the WP days.

Microsoft still allows 'installer' type software in some forms; however, it appears these are going to be removed if the developer doesn't wrap the Win32 portion or have a legitimate need that a wrapped Win32 title can't do through the security model.

In the time of Windows 8, security was less of a 'model' goal of the Store as WP8 handled this locally with heavy isolation and Win8 was ready to take on a secure framework. (Even though the Win8 team treated it like one, at the detriment of developers and users.)

With Win8 Microsoft allowed any software title to be listed in the store, with a link to the developer's download. Most developers didn't take advantage of this and with the security model changes with Windows 8.1 and 10, Microsoft removed these features.

A lot can be said about the Microsoft Store, but users can expect software to be safe and secure.

Microsoft's development testing history along with a platform code set designed to be analyzed make for a really good set of technologies to catch malicious intent. The server-side security screening technologies work fairly well, and even if something happens to trick its way through, App behavior shifts are caught and checked against the servers (which exists as a layer above and under 'permissions') and are just one part of the protection layers of UWP/Store software.

The first issue is that the app was let through in the first place. Surely there should be a check to see if an app links to an external website to download software? That's a security risk.

But secondly, good on Microsoft for doing this. Google knew the rules, but intentionally disregarded them.

The app shouldn't have made its way to the store in the first place. I have a feeling the person who approved it might have a nightmare on Christmas now

This is kind of funny. MS gets more and more desperate. It is so amazing how fast things change. Not long ago MS was the top dog and how quickly a company can fall in tech.

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