The Google Chrome browser finally came to the Windows
Store. But it was only in the form of an app that opened a
browser tab so you could download it the regular way.
It’s a snub of the Microsoft Windows Store, and the
Windows 10 S operating system: If you want Google Chrome, you
have to go to Google.
Microsoft pulled the app, citing a violation of Windows
Store policies around apps needing to provide “distinct
The good news for Windows 10 users is that Google Chrome finally
came to the Windows Store,
as originally spotted by The Verge.
The bad news is that the installer app was almost entirely
useless, and was taken down hours after being put up after users
slammed the app in the ratings. In a
comment to The Verge, Microsoft says it was because the app
violated Microsoft Store policies.
If you downloaded the “Google Chrome Installer” app and launched
it, and it literally just opened up a browser window so you could
download Google Chrome for real from Google’s website.
You can get the same effect by going to Google. Or by searching
“Chrome” in Google (or Microsoft Bing, for that matter).
Here’s what the app looks like when you open it:
It’s almost like a joke. As Microsoft continues its push to stock
up the Windows Store — its biggest weakness put up against the
Apple iOS or Google Android ecosystems — Google is making it
clear that it has no plans to fully embrace Windows 10, in a way
that’s actually kind of funny.
But if it’s a joke, Windows users weren’t feeling it. Before
Google took it down, just hours after first getting discovered,
the Google Chrome Installer app was averaging 1.5 stars with 74
reviews. Here’s a look at what that looked like:
For its part, Microsoft tells the Verge that apps in its store
need to “provide unique and distinct value.” It also
welcomed Google to try again, saying that “we welcome Google to
build a Microsoft Store browser app compliant with our Microsoft
Business Insider has reached out to Microsoft for
additional comment. Google did not immediately
respond to a request for comment.
For most Windows 10 users, that app was more of an annoyance than
anything: They can download Chrome, as they always have. However,
earlier this year, Microsoft introduced Windows
10 S, a special version of Windows, aimed at students, that
can only run software from the Windows Store. Those
users will find that this Google Chrome Installer app doesn’t
help at all: While users can download the file, Windows 10 S
won’t let them run the software.
There’s a good technical reason why Chrome can’t come to the
Windows Store in a way that’s more helpful for Windows 10 S
users: Google insists on using Blink, its own web rendering
engine, while Windows 10 S requires browsers to use Microsoft’s
own technology for the same. Unless Microsoft ever relents on
that requirement, Google Chrome will probably never really come
to the Windows Store.
Still, while Google seems not to be all aboard with the Windows
Store, it hasn’t been all bad news:
Spotify came to the Windows Store earlier this year, with
Apple iTunes soon to come. That said, iTunes for the Windows
recently delayed, with Apple citing technical issues in
bringing it over.