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Google Chrome

Google Chrome


Google Chrome
Google Chrome icon (2011).svg
Google Chrome screenshot.png


Google Chrome is a freeware web browser[7] developed by Google that uses the WebKit layout engine. It was released as a beta version for Microsoft Windows on September 2, 2008, and as a stable public release on December 11, 2008. As of February 2013, according to StatCounter, Google Chrome has a 37% worldwide usage share of web browsers making it the most widely used web browser in the world.[8] Net Applications, however, indicates that Chrome is only third when it comes to the size of its user base, behind Internet Explorer and Firefox.[9]

In September 2008, Google released a large portion of Chrome's source code as an open source project called Chromium,[10][11] on which Chrome releases are still based.


Google's Eric Schmidt opposed the development of an independent web browser for six years. He stated that "at the time, Google was a small company", and he did not want to go through "bruising browser wars". After co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page hired several Mozilla Firefox developers and built a demonstration of Chrome, however, Schmidt admitted that "It was so good that it essentially forced me to change my mind".[12]


The release announcement was originally scheduled for September 3, 2008, and a comic by Scott McCloud was to be sent to journalists and bloggers explaining the features within the new browser.[13] Copies intended for Europe were shipped early and German blogger Philipp Lenssen of Google Blogoscoped[14] made a scanned copy of the 38-page comic available on his website after receiving it on September 1, 2008.[15] Google subsequently made the comic available on Google Books[16] and mentioned it on their official blog along with an explanation for the early release.[17]

Public release

The browser was first publicly released for Microsoft Windows (XP and later versions) on September 2, 2008 in 43 languages, officially a beta version.[18]

On the same day, a CNET news item[19] drew attention to a passage in the Terms of Service statement for the initial beta release, which seemed to grant to Google a license to all content transferred via the Chrome browser. This passage was inherited from the general Google terms of service.[20] Google responded to this criticism immediately by stating that the language used was borrowed from other products, and removed this passage from the Terms of Service.[21]

Chrome quickly gained about 1% usage share.[17][22][23][24] After the initial surge, usage share dropped until it hit a low of 0.69% in October 2008. It then started rising again and by December 2008, Chrome again passed the 1% threshold.[25]

In early January 2009, CNET reported that Google planned to release versions of Chrome for OS X and Linux in the first half of the year.[26] The first official Chrome OS X and Linux developer previews[27] were announced on June 4, 2009 with a blog post[28] saying they were missing many features and were intended for early feedback rather than general use.

In December 2009, Google released beta versions of Chrome for OS X and Linux.[29][30] Google Chrome 5.0, announced on May 25, 2010, was the first stable release to support all three platforms.[31]

Chrome was one of the twelve browsers offered to European Economic Area users of Microsoft Windows in 2010.[32]




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Added by katie on Tuesday, March 26, 2013
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