Chrome For Android released – but only for ICS

Google has just released a version of Chrome for use on Android driven devices, but  with one massive limitation. It is only available for those devices running the Ice Cream Sandwich version of Android.

As with many of Google’s early release products, Chrome for Android is still in Beta, but it is packed to the rafters with features. The new mobile browser includes many features that make Chrome so popular on the PC, including speed, simplicity, bookmark/open tabs sync, and autocomplete suggestions.

Chrome for Android automatically loads your top Google search results in the background for faster browsing, includes the URL/Search Omnibox, comes with an interface specifically designed for small-screen phones, card view, and makes use of intuitive gestures.

One of the best features in Chrome for Android is its syncing ability. By syncing Chrome for Android with the same email ID used in the desktop version, users can view open tabs, sync bookmarks, get smarter auto-fill suggestion and more. The feature set also includes; GPU accelerated, 3D transforms, Full screen API, and binary screenshots.

There are a couple of negatives though; Chrome for Android does not ship with Adobe’s Flash Player plug-in, shortly after its release Adobe announced it would not be supporting the new mobile browser. The other is that extensions are not currently supported, although Google is reportedly working on that aspect.

It’s a shame this excellent mobile browser is currently restricted to ICS devices only. Hang in there though, apparently ICS updates to Gingerbread and Honeycomb devices are projected for release later this year.

Chrome for Android is available free from the Android Market.

4 thoughts on “Chrome For Android released – but only for ICS”

  1. THIS is what Android needs. Imagine booting up Chrome on a Tablet running ICS, the internet browsing capabilities would be too much to take!

    Seriously though, I cannot wait until I can update my phone to one running ICS, if only for this feature.

    Great post Jim!

    1. Pat,
      Are you rooted? There are a couple ICS ROMs you can try and a few 2.3.5 ROMs with ICS skins. I’m running a 2.3.5 ROM with Sense 3.5 and a few ICS additions.

  2. I wasn’t too happy myself when I read that caveat! Google really needs to step up and work on their fragmentation. I LOVE Android, but the “this only works on this version and that only works on this other version” stuff is killing me!

    We’ve seen Apple being able to introduce multiple OS versions across hardware of different vintages without much problem and Android needs to work toward this – SOON!

    Why can’t Ice Cream Sandwich be released (officially) for my 9 month old Evo 4G? I know it will run fine on my hardware because I’ve tried a few of the ICS ROMs available.

    OK, my rant is over.

  3. Are you rooted?
    Hmm, not even going to try and explain what connotations that phrase has in Ozland. An unfortunate choice of words from the originator – maybe “routed” would have been preferable. đŸ™‚

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