Is Microsoft forcing Spotify onto Windows 11 users?

Spotify logo on Windows laptop
(Image credit: TechRadar)

Spotify is mysteriously installing itself onto Windows 10 and Windows 11 PCs, appearing in the Taskbar when you start up your PC – and I've had the pleasure of experiencing this myself.

Starting up my PC this week, I found Spotify's icon glowing in my Taskbar as other apps were also starting up. It's an app I use on my iPhone and Mac daily, but it's never been on my PC as it's only used for games.

It was the quickest uninstall I've done in recent years, as it's not just a bug, but a potential security flaw. I didn't allow this app to be installed onto my PC, and while I've reached out to Microsoft for comment, it's made me wonder why this has happened without notice.

We've been here before, but it was with a heads-up

Another situation that springs to mind is when Apple and U2 made an agreement to make the band's album, 'Songs of Innocence', available for users as a giveaway, to mark the release of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus models in 2014.

Users weren't happy then, either, as some would have a mix of Euro-Dance albums and U2's new release – which would be a good ice breaker on one end of the spectrum, and an awkward conversation on the other.

However, this could be a feature. The Microsoft Store has been known to install apps on its own, with games and other Microsoft utilities appearing on your Taskbar. But the company hasn't notified its Windows users of Spotify being available through the Store this week, so the only reaction that myself and other users are experiencing from this is annoyance.

Hopefully, Microsoft will respond to this strange appearance of a third-party app soon, as it could be a PR disaster waiting to happen.

Daryl Baxter
Software & Downloads Writer

Daryl had been freelancing for 3 years before joining TechRadar, now reporting on everything software-related. In his spare time he's written a book, 'The Making of Tomb Raider', alongside podcasting and usually found playing games old and new on his PC and MacBook Pro. If you have a story about an updated app, one that's about to launch, or just anything Software-related, drop him a line.