Google Announces Chrome for Android Beta

Good news: Nearly four years after first introducing both the Chrome browser and the Android device OS, Google has announced Chrome for Android (in beta). Android devices have been using a no-name browser until Chrome was ready for prime time.

The bad news: Currently, Chrome for Android only runs on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich devices.

In a blog post, Google’s Sundar Pichai, SVP, Chrome and Apps, outlines what to expect in the beta:

* Speed. In Chrome for Android, you can scroll web pages “as quickly as you can flick your finger,” Pichal writes. Top search results are loaded in the background so that pages will render more quickly. As with desktop Chrome, search and navigation are performed within the same task bar (which Google calls an “omnibox”).

* Device-specific. Browser tabs fit “just as naturally on a small-screen phone as they do on a larger screen tablet,” according to Pichal.

* Link Preview lets you get a peek at a web page before clicking to load it.

* Security features include incognito mode for private browsing and the ability to set detailed privacy options.

* Compatibility with desktop Chrome settings. When you’re signed into Chrome for Android, the tabs you left open in Chrome on your computer will show up on your Droid screen. You can also sync bookmarks between devices. Also, Autocomplete will know which sites you’ve visited in desktop Chrome.

The Google blog didn’t say when Chrome for Android will trickle down to older versions of the Android OS.

TAGS:

Google, Android, Chrome, beta

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