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2/8/2011
08:16 PM
Jim Rapoza
Jim Rapoza
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Google Chrome 9 Advances The 3D Graphical Web

With its recently released Chrome 9 Web browser, Google has added several enhancements to provide a more immersive and rich Web experience. Chief among these new capabilities is default support for the emerging WebGL standard. This makes it possible to run 3D animations, games, and other rich interfaces within a browser without the need for third-party plug-ins and extensions such as Adobe Flash or Microsoft Silverlight.




In its short existence, Google's Chrome Web browser has been on a very fast development cycle, releasing nine new versions in the time it takes Microsoft to release just one new version of Internet Explorer. Of course, each new version of Chrome tends to include only a few new features, with some being under-the-hood changes and bug fixes, and little in the way of new features that users would notice. The newly released Chrome 9 fits somewhere in the middle of this spectrum, but while it only has a few new features, they are in many ways significant. With its support for rich application interfaces and games through WebGL, and its increased integration with the Google Web Store, Chrome 9 also showcases features that will be key to the potential success of the browser-only Chrome OS.

SEE ALSO:

Review: Google Chrome 9 Unleashes New Features

Google Chrome 9 Brings WebGL

Google Bets $20,000 You Can't Hack Chrome

Browser Guide: Choosing The Best Standard For Business

Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264

Review: Google Chrome Browser Gets Business Friendly

Top 10 Google Predictions For 2011

Top 10 Google Stories Of 2010


While it's still under development, the emerging WebGL standard, which is now supported in Chrome 9, will make it possible to run rich 3D interfaces, such as this fish bowl, natively within the browser, without the need for add-ons.

SEE ALSO:

Review: Google Chrome 9 Unleashes New Features

Google Chrome 9 Brings WebGL

Google Bets $20,000 You Can't Hack Chrome

Google Apps Marketplace Adds Education Category

Browser Guide: Choosing The Best Standard For Business

Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264

Review: Google Chrome Browser Gets Business Friendly

Top 10 Google Predictions For 2011

Top 10 Google Stories Of 2010


Google Instant search makes it possible to dynamically view search results, immediately as the user types search terms. Google Instant is now integrated in Chrome 9 -- but it is turned off by default and must be enabled from the Chrome Options window.

SEE ALSO:

Review: Google Chrome 9 Unleashes New Features

Google Chrome 9 Brings WebGL

Google Bets $20,000 You Can't Hack Chrome

Google Apps Marketplace Adds Education Category

Browser Guide: Choosing The Best Standard For Business

Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264

Review: Google Chrome Browser Gets Business Friendly

Top 10 Google Predictions For 2011

Top 10 Google Stories Of 2010


Once Google Instant is enabled, search results will show in the main browser window as the user types search terms within the Chrome browser's address bar.

SEE ALSO:

Review: Google Chrome 9 Unleashes New Features

Google Chrome 9 Brings WebGL

Google Bets $20,000 You Can't Hack Chrome

Google Apps Marketplace Adds Education Category

Browser Guide: Choosing The Best Standard For Business

Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264

Review: Google Chrome Browser Gets Business Friendly

Top 10 Google Predictions For 2011

Top 10 Google Stories Of 2010


Within the Google Web Store, a wide number of apps are available to use within Chrome 9. When viewing an app, it can be "installed" to the browser.

SEE ALSO:

Review: Google Chrome 9 Unleashes New Features

Google Chrome 9 Brings WebGL

Google Bets $20,000 You Can't Hack Chrome

Google Apps Marketplace Adds Education Category

Browser Guide: Choosing The Best Standard For Business

Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264

Review: Google Chrome Browser Gets Business Friendly

Top 10 Google Predictions For 2011

Top 10 Google Stories Of 2010


Installing an app from the Web Store essentially just adds its button or shortcut to the new Apps area of the Chrome New Tab.

SEE ALSO:

Review: Google Chrome 9 Unleashes New Features

Google Chrome 9 Brings WebGL

Google Bets $20,000 You Can't Hack Chrome

Google Apps Marketplace Adds Education Category

Browser Guide: Choosing The Best Standard For Business

Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264

Review: Google Chrome Browser Gets Business Friendly

Top 10 Google Predictions For 2011

Top 10 Google Stories Of 2010


Once an app, like this World of Solitaire game, has been installed in Chrome 9, users can access it directly from the New Tab and run the app within the browser.

SEE ALSO:

Review: Google Chrome 9 Unleashes New Features

Google Chrome 9 Brings WebGL

Google Bets $20,000 You Can't Hack Chrome

Google Apps Marketplace Adds Education Category

Browser Guide: Choosing The Best Standard For Business

Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264

Review: Google Chrome Browser Gets Business Friendly

Top 10 Google Predictions For 2011

Top 10 Google Stories Of 2010


For the most part, what the Google Web Store calls "apps" are basically just Web sites. Many of the apps from the store, such as this solitaire game, ran equally well within other browsers such as Firefox.

SEE ALSO:

Review: Google Chrome 9 Unleashes New Features

Google Chrome 9 Brings WebGL

Google Bets $20,000 You Can't Hack Chrome

Google Apps Marketplace Adds Education Category

Browser Guide: Choosing The Best Standard For Business

Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264

Review: Google Chrome Browser Gets Business Friendly

Top 10 Google Predictions For 2011

Top 10 Google Stories Of 2010


Chrome 9 also includes integration with the new Google Cloud Print beta. With this feature enabled, Chrome can print to your home or office printers that are accessible to the machine running Chrome.

SEE ALSO:

Review: Google Chrome 9 Unleashes New Features

Google Chrome 9 Brings WebGL

Google Bets $20,000 You Can't Hack Chrome

Google Apps Marketplace Adds Education Category

Browser Guide: Choosing The Best Standard For Business

Google Chrome Adds WebM Video, Drops H.264

Review: Google Chrome Browser Gets Business Friendly

Top 10 Google Predictions For 2011

Top 10 Google Stories Of 2010

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