Chrome Forges Forward

by Cole O’C
While this is a fairly old article talking about some updates to Chrome, it talks about the initial release of the Chrome app store, and some people in class seemed rather confused when I was talking about it a few weeks ago. Not to be confused with the Google’s Android Market, Chrome’s Web Store offers the same type of applications that users are accustomed to purchasing on their phones with the exception that they run on the Chrome browser. They are available in a similar fashion to phones: users can download apps, either free or paid. Paid apps are registered to your Google account so that you do not have to pay for them again should you choose to stop using them, change computers, and so forth. Many of the applications available will be instantly recognizable to Apple Store and Android Market users, such as blockbuster hits “Angry Birds” and “Plants vs. Zombies.” The article also talks about some other things Google had in the works, although they are rather old now. Chrome’s JavaScript engine was redone, leading to significantly increased loading speeds. Google also announced that they were beginning very early tests on a Chrome operating system to be run on laptops, not tablets. The article also mentions that Chrome was trailing Firefox in terms of users; however, about a year after this article was written, Chrome overtook Firefox in market share in December 2011.

The Chrome Web Store is very interesting in the role it fills. Previously, the small apps that iOS and Android users have grown accustomed to were only available on mobile devices. By the time this article came out, I had already had my Motorola Droid for about a year. Now, the same small, enjoyable games available on phones would be available on my desktop. The only thing I had previously seen that was even close to Chrome’s Web Store was Firefox’s extensions, which are a far cry from the Web Store.

Chrome was initially very hard for me to become interested in, despite my positive feelings for Google. I had become very used to my Firefox extensions, and the majority of them were not offered on Chrome. Over time, though, the extensions I liked migrated to Chrome as it begun to shine. The load speeds are fantastic, and their newly implemented instant memory release is fantastic for someone like me who opens a lot of tabs and has a tendency to never close my browser. My favorite aspect of Chrome is the Sandbox, a virtual environment created within the software itself that makes it much more challenging to hack a Chrome user’s computer via the browser.

Gross, Doug. (2010, Dec 7). CNN Tech. Retrieved from http://www.cnn.com/2010/TECH/web/12/07/google.chrome.os/

In reference to Chrome overtaking Firefox’s market shares: Claburn, Thomas. (2011, Dec 1.) Information Week. Retrieved from http://www.informationweek.com/news/development/web/232200571