Google celebrates Chrome's birthday with a new release

The Web browser is two years old today, and Google is marking the occasion by release Chrome 6

It's certainly been a festive week in Google's browser division. Yesterday, Google Chrome posted its highest-ever market share percentage, and today, Chrome celebrates its second birthday with the release of Chrome 6. Two years may not seem like a long time, but my, how browsers have evolved since Chrome's debut.

As Product Manager Brian Rakowski points out in a Google Chrome blog post, "In August 2008, JavaScript was 10 times slower, HTML5 support wasn't yet an essential feature in modern browsers, and the idea of a sandboxed, multi-process browser was only a research project."

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But the browser market doesn't just move quickly, it demands browsers that move quickly, and speed is what Google is pushing the most with its latest browser, claiming it represents a 15 percent speed boost over the previous version. This is one detail that hasn't changed much over the past two years: When Chrome was first introduced, its swiftness -- especially when it comes to JavaScript rendering -- outpaced its rivals.

Speed boosts alone do not an update make, though, so Google also cleaned up the already minimalist UI for the latest version. Google also enhanced Chrome's synchronization capabilities to allow users to sync extensions and autofill entries between copies of the browser on different PCs.

As for the future, Google promises to ratchet up the pace of upgrades (there's that fixation on speed again) to one every six weeks or so. And in a nod to Mozilla's success with Firefox extensions, Google is looking to open up the Chrome Web Store, where users can find one-stop shopping for browser-enhancing Web apps, in the next few months.

This article, "Google celebrates Chrome's birthday with a new release," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Get the first word on what the important tech news really means with the InfoWorld Tech Watch blog.

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