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  • Google Chrome

    Google Chrome

    • Google Chrome
      Google Chrome for Android Icon 2016.svg
      Google Chrome Screenshot.png
      Google Chrome 54.0.2824.0 running on Windows 10
      Developer(s) Google Inc.
      Initial release September 2, 2008; 8 years ago (2008-09-02)
      Stable release(s)
      Windows 55.0.2883.87 / December 9, 2016; 43 days ago (2016-12-09)
      macOS 55.0.2883.95 / December 13, 2016; 39 days ago (2016-12-13)
      Linux 55.0.2883.87 / December 12, 2016; 40 days ago (2016-12-12)
      Android 55.0.2883.91 / December 9, 2016; 43 days ago (2016-12-09)
      iOS 55.0.2883.79 / December 5, 2016; 47 days ago (2016-12-05)
      Preview release(s)
      Beta (Windows, macOS, Linux) 56.0.2924.67 / January 18, 2017; 3 days ago (2017-01-18)
      Beta (Android) 56.0.2824.53 / January 5, 2017; 16 days ago (2017-01-05)
      Dev (Windows, macOS, Linux) 57.0.2986.0 / January 19, 2017; 2 days ago (2017-01-19)
      Dev (Android) 57.0.2984.0 / January 17, 2017; 4 days ago (2017-01-17)
      Development status Active
      Written in C++
      Operating system
      Engines Blink (WebKit on iOS), V8
      Platform IA-32, x64, ARMv7
      Available in 47 languages
      Type Web browser, mobile browser
      License Freeware under Google Chrome Terms of Service
      Website chrome.com
      Windows 55.0.2883.87 / December 9, 2016; 43 days ago (2016-12-09)
      macOS 55.0.2883.95 / December 13, 2016; 39 days ago (2016-12-13)
      Linux 55.0.2883.87 / December 12, 2016; 40 days ago (2016-12-12)
      Android 55.0.2883.91 / December 9, 2016; 43 days ago (2016-12-09)
      iOS 55.0.2883.79 / December 5, 2016; 47 days ago (2016-12-05)
      Beta (Windows, macOS, Linux) 56.0.2924.67 / January 18, 2017; 3 days ago (2017-01-18)
      Beta (Android) 56.0.2824.53 / January 5, 2017; 16 days ago (2017-01-05)
      Dev (Windows, macOS, Linux) 57.0.2986.0 / January 19, 2017; 2 days ago (2017-01-19)
      Dev (Android) 57.0.2984.0 / January 17, 2017; 4 days ago (2017-01-17)

      Google Chrome is a freeware web browser developed by Google. It was first released in 2008, for Microsoft Windows, and was later ported to Linux, macOS, iOS and Android. Google Chrome is also the main component of Chrome OS, where it serves as a platform for running web apps.

      Google releases the majority of Chrome's source code as the Chromium open-source project. A notable component that is not open-source is the built-in Adobe Flash Player (that Chrome has disabled by default since September 2016). Chrome used the WebKit layout engine until version 27. As of version 28, all Chrome ports except the iOS port use Blink, a fork of the WebKit engine.

      As of November 2016, StatCounter estimates that Google Chrome has a 63% worldwide usage share of web browsers as a desktop browser. It also has 51% market share across all platforms combined, because it's also the most popular browser for smartphones. Its success has led to Google expanding the "Chrome" brand name on various other products such as Chromecast, Chromebook, Chromebit, Chromebox and Chromebase.


      Tracking methods
      Method Information sent When Optional?
      Installation Randomly generated token included in installer. Used to measure success rate of Google Chrome once at installation.

      On installation

      No
      RLZ identifier Encoded string, according to Google, contains non-identifying information about where Chrome was downloaded from and its installation week, and is used to measure promotional campaigns. Google provides the source code to decode this string.
      • On Google search query
      • On first launch and first use of address bar
      Partial
      clientID Unique identifier along with user preferences, logs of usage metrics and crashes. Unknown Yes
      default disabled
      Omnibox predictions Text typed into the address bar. While typing Yes
      default enabled
      Page not found Text typed into the address bar. Upon receiving "Server not found" response Yes
      default enabled
      Google Update (Windows) Information about how often Chrome is used, details about the OS and Chrome version. Periodically Partial
      Google Software Update (OS X)

      Major.minor reflects scheduling policy
      Build.patch identifies content progression
      • Chrome supported, up to version 45, plug-ins with the Netscape Plugin Application Programming Interface (NPAPI), so that plug-ins (for example Adobe Flash Player) run as unrestricted separate processes outside the browser and cannot be sandboxed as tabs are. ActiveX is not supported. Since 2010, Adobe Flash has been integral to Chrome and does not need be installed separately. Flash is kept up to date as part of Chrome's own updates.Java applet support was available in Chrome with Java 6 update 12 and above. Support for Java under OS X was provided by a Java Update released on May 18, 2010.
      • On August 12, 2009, Google introduced a replacement for NPAPI that is more portable and more secure called Pepper Plugin API (PPAPI). The default bundled PPAPI Flash Player (or Pepper-based Flash Player) was available on Chrome OS first, then replaced the NPAPI Flash Player on Linux from Chrome version 20, on Windows from version 21 (which also reduced Flash crashes by 20%), and eventually came to OS X at version 23.
      • On September 23, 2013, Google announced that it will be deprecating and then removing NPAPI support. NPAPI support was removed from Linux in Chrome release 35. NPAPI plugins like Java can no longer work in Chrome (but there are workarounds for Flash by using PPAPI Flash Player on Linux including for Chromium).
      • On April 14, 2015, Google released Chrome v42, disabling the NPAPI by default. This makes plugins that do not have a PPAPI plugin counterpart incompatible with Chrome, such as Java, Silverlight and Unity. However, NPAPI support could be enabled through the chrome://flags menu, until the release of version 45 in September 2015, that removed NPAPI support entirely.
      • On Google search query
      • On first launch and first use of address bar
      • Major represents a product release. These are scheduled 7–8 per year, unlike other software systems where the major version number updates only with substantial new content.
      • Minor is usually 0. References to version 'x' or 'x.0', e.g. 42.0, refer to this major.minor designation.
      • Build is ever increasing. For a release cycle, e.g. 42.0, there are several builds in the Canary and Developer period. The last build number from Developer is kept throughout Beta and Stable and is locked with the major.minor for that release.
      • Patch resets with each build, incrementing with each patch. The first patch is 0, but usually the first publicly released patch is somewhat higher. In Beta and Stable, only patch increments.
      • Windows 7 or later (support for Windows XP and Vista ended in April 2016)
      • OS X; version 10.9 or later (support for 32-bit Macs ended in October 2014, support for OS X 10.6, 10.7, and 10.8 ended in April 2016, support for OS X 10.5 ended after release of Chrome 21)
      • Linux:64-bit Ubuntu 14.04+; Debian 8+; openSUSE 13.1+; Fedora 21+ (support for 32-bit Intel processors ended in March 2016)
      • Android; version 4.1 or later (Chrome version 42 was the final version to support Android 4.0)
      • iOS; version 9.0 or later
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