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Chrome for iOS merits another look

Sections: iDevice Apps, iPad, iPad mini, iPhone, iPhone/iPod touch/iPad, iPod touch

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I was pretty underwhelmed by the original iteration of the Chrome browser for iOS. I found it generally mediocre, not especially fast, somewhat buggy, and a doubly big disappointment since I had been expecting—if not great—at least really good stuff based on my experience with the Google Search app, which actually is great.

Chrome for iOS

The problem, of course, wasn’t primarily with Chrome’s development efforts, but with Apple, which decreed that Chrome for iOS couldn’t use Google’s V8 JavaScript engine, and instead was obliged to use UIWebView while the native iOS browser, Safari, uses the Nitro JavaScript engine (to Safari’s advantage of course).

Chrome for iOS

However, I’m happy to report that in the interim since the original build of Chrome for iOS was released last June, subsequent refinements have evidently found workarounds to some of the UIWebView shortcomings, and the browser has improved to the point that I quite enjoy using it. It’s still not up to the standard of Chrome for OS X of course, but not bad at all in the context of iOS browsers.

Chrome for iOS

Chrome for iOS is now good enough that I can imagine entertaining the idea of switching to it as my main workaday iPad browser, were that possible. Which it isn’t. More Apple gatekeeping. However, Chrome Search now has an option to shunt an open Web page to Google as an alternative to Safari when you need full Web browser support.

Chrome for iOS

Chrome for iOS Features:

  • Chrome lets you synchronize your open tabs, bookmarks, passwords and Omnibox data from your computer with your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. That way, you have your Chrome on all of your devices.
  • Need to step away from your computer? Access the tabs you have open on your computer on your iPhone or iPad and pick up where you left off.
  • Sync your bookmarks on all of your devices. Quickly go to your favorite sites, no matter where you are.
  • Spend less time typing. Visit a site on your computer and Chrome will autocomplete its address in the Omnibox on your phone or tablet.

Chrome for iOS

  • Chrome for iOSSend pages from your computer to your iPhone or iPad with a single click. You can read them on the go, even when you’re offline.
  • Automatically sign in to Google sites, like Gmail, for fast and seamless access.
  • Sync your passwords across all of your devices to sign in to your favorite sites faster.
  • Browse the web in Incognito mode, without leaving your history behind on your device.

 

Last week, Google released Chrome 26 for iPhone and iPad, a refresh containing more updates and refinements including:

  • Fullscreen for iPhone and iPod touch
  • Support for Google Cloud Print, Air Print
  • Performance and stability improvements

Chrome for iOS is compatible with iPhone (optimized for iPhone 5), iPod touch, and iPad, and requires iOS 5.0 or later

For more information, visit www.google.ca.

Product [Chrome for iOS]

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