Google Chrome

Google Chrome is a freeware web browser developed by Google that uses the WebKit layout engine. It was first released as a beta version ( Beta (named after the second letter of the Greek alphabet) is the software development phase following alpha. It generally begins when the software is feature complete. Software in the beta phase will generally have many more bugs in it than completed software, as well as speed/performance issues. The focus of beta testing is reducing impacts to users, often incorporating usability testing. The process of delivering a beta version to the users is called beta release and this is typically the first time that the software is available outside of the organization that developed it ) for Microsoft Windows on September 2, 2008, and the public stable release was on December 11, 2008. As of January 2012, Google Chrome has approximately 25–28% worldwide usage share of web browsers, making it the second or the third most widely used browser, according to different estimates. Google web browsers, Chrome + Android web browser, are now used more on wikimedia than any other browser.

For six years, Google's Chief Executive Eric Schmidt opposed the development of an independent web browser. He stated that "At the time, Google was a small company", and he did not want to go through "bruising browser wars". However, after co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page hired several Mozilla Firefox developers and built a demonstration of Chrome, Schmidt admitted that "It was so good that it essentially forced me to change my mind".

The release announcement was originally scheduled for September 3, 2008, and a comic by Scott McCloud was to be sent to journalists and bloggers explaining the features within the new browser. Copies intended for Europe were shipped early and German blogger Philipp Lenssen of Google Blogoscoped made a scanned copy of the 38-page comic available on his website after receiving it on September 1, 2008. Google subsequently made the comic available on Google Books and mentioned it on their official blog along with an explanation for the early release.

Public release
An early version of Chromium for Linux, explaining the difference between Chrome and Chromium

The browser was first publicly released for Microsoft Windows (XP and later versions) on September 2, 2008 in 43 languages, officially a beta version. Chrome quickly gained about 1% market share. After the initial surge, usage share dropped until it hit a low of 0.69% in October 2008. It then started rising again and by December 2008, Chrome again passed the 1% threshold. In early January 2009, CNET reported that Google planned to release versions of Chrome for Mac OS X and Linux in the first half of the year. The first official Chrome Mac OS X and Linux developer previews were announced on June 4, 2009 with a blog post saying they were missing many features and were intended for early feedback rather than general use. In December 2009, Google released beta versions of Chrome for Mac OS X and Linux. Google Chrome 5.0, announced on May 25, 2010, was the first stable release to support all three platforms. Chrome was one of the twelve browsers offered to European Economic Area users of Microsoft Windows in 2010.

Chrome was assembled from 25 different code libraries from Google and third parties such as Mozilla's Netscape Portable Runtime, Network Security Services, NPAPI, as well as SQLite and a number of other open-source projects. The JavaScript virtual machine was considered a sufficiently important project to be split off (as was Adobe/Mozilla's Tamarin) and handled by a separate team in Denmark coordinated by Lars Bak at Aarhus. According to Google, existing implementations were designed "for small programs, where the performance and interactivity of the system weren't that important", but web applications such as Gmail "are using the web browser to the fullest when it comes to DOM manipulations and JavaScript", and therefore would significantly benefit from a JavaScript engine that could work faster.

Usage share of web browsers
Chrome uses the WebKit rendering engine to display web pages, on advice from the Android team. Chrome is tested internally with unit testing, "automated user interface testing of scripted user actions", fuzz testing, as well as WebKit's layout tests (99% of which Chrome is claimed to have passed) and against commonly accessed websites inside the Google index within 20–30 minutes. Google created Gears for Chrome, which added features for web developers typically relating to the building of web applications, including offline support. However, Google phased out Gears in favor of HTML5.

On January 11, 2011 the Chrome Product manager, Mike Jazayeri, announced that Chrome will no longer support H.264 video codec for its HTML5 player, citing the desire to bring Google Chrome more inline with the currently available open codecs available in the Chromium project, which Chrome is based on. As of January 2012, there has been no announcement yet of which future version of Chrome will actually implement the removal of H.264 support.

1. Speed - this is the only browser that is multi process. This means that for every new tab or plugin there is a new process created. This is not only fast, but for the first time that multi core cpu of yours will come in handy. Also javascript is compiled directly into machine code, which is run with greatest speed. 2. Stability - for the same as above, in case of plugin or tab crash - all other processes survive. This means you can only loose one tab. And you also get a process manager. 3. Lightweight - On long term Chrome uses less memory than other browsers. Especially memory usage is very clean, as once you close a tab, whole process is ended and all its memory is released. You also get process manager which shows you memory hogs, and where you can kill processes. 4. Incognito mode - You can browse privately and securely, without writing a single file or data into history, cookies, or cache. Ideal for "finding that surprise gift for wife" as google puts it, or as we all know - ideal for browsing pron late at night… 5. UI and ease of use - Chrome has completely renewed user interface with tabs put on top. Use is very simple, installation is a snap. Since there are just a few features and things you can configure, there is nothing to mess up.

1. First Beta- This is just a first public beta of browser, so do not expect it to properly render and show every and all web pages. Even Acid3 test completes just 71% of tests (which is weird as WebKit on which Chrome is based, has no problems completing 100%). 2. Missing features - Several functions as bookmark management, session management and password management are very basic. For a serious web user this is a big disadvantage, and hopefully Google or community will address those soon.

3. Missing extensions - Similar to above. If I inspect my Firefox addons page, I see a number of plugins. Now, since I know that every plugin is eating away computer's resources, I tend to use only completely vital plugins for me, and currently on my Firefox addons list are: RoboForm, Tab Mix Plus, Google Toolbar, SeoQuake and FlashBlock. Especially the first two are vital for me, as they offer transparent way to save/view/manage/export/import my user/pw and other field's data which I can also use in Firefox and IE… We checked with RoboForm and their answer was "RoboForm will not be able to work with Chrome". We hope this attitude to change soon. 4. Privacy concern - Google owns 60% of all web search queries worldwide. Google controls 70% of all web based advertising. Google most probably already owns your mailbox, and your online files, is tracking your website visitors. 5. UI - As much as I love new user interface, it is in fact pretty limited. As stability and speed targets power users, it is disappointing to see that tab management is pathetic, and does not even support multiple rows - and once you have 20+ tabs open things get crowded and you cannot see anything in tab bar.

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