Google Chrome update adds speed, privacy mprovements

Google's Chrome browser is now faster and has gained the ability for users to hide thumbnails on its New Tab page

Google's Chrome browser is now faster and has gained the ability for users to hide thumbnails on its New Tab page. The update, internally called Chrome 2, is being automatically rolled out to current users and is also available for download, according to Chrome team member Darin Fisher, writing in the Google corporate blog.

According to Fisher, JavaScript-heavy pages now load 30 percent faster while embarrassing thumbnails can be 100 percent hidden. Which improvement users best respond to remains to be seen. The update also failed to address a common user complaint: There is still no Google for Macintosh, just Windows XP and Vista.

The updated version, was announced on Google's company blog yesterday. Other improvements include form autofill and full screen mode, both already common in competing browsers.

Chrome has generated much greater interest than market share since its introduction last September, in part because it lacked popular features included in existing browsers. This update adds some of those, but mostly builds on Chrome's speed claims.

You can see the benchmarks Google uses to tune its JavaScript engine, dubbed V8, here.

David Coursey tweets as dcoursey and can be reached using www.coursey.com/contact.

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