Since Google finally released a mobile version of Chrome with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, it’s been the go-to browser for many. Not least due to the fact that it’s so much more secure than other browsers, but also down to its speed and the ability to sync tabs with other devices running Chrome. Just as it does on Desktop platforms, the mobile version of Chrome now comes in Stable, Beta and Dev builds. The Beta build has been around for a lot longer, but the Dev build is starting to introduce us to some new changes in approach from the Chrome team, and this time around it’s to do with how downloads are handled.
If you’ve been using Chrome for a long time, then you’ll no doubt be familiar with how it handles downloads; with a simple notification showing its progress in the notification tray, and no feedback when it’s finished downloading. Now, in version 47 of Chrome Dev, there’s a bar that appears at the bottom of the page as it would do in the Desktop versions of Chrome. It has the same open button as the Desktop versions, and occupies the same sort of space at the bottom of the browser, of course it’s not exactly the same, but the behavior here is very similar. As Android Police have noted however, this needs some work as it doesn’t currently work on the third developer preview of Marshmall0w and it can’t be swiped away as all other notifications – including the previous implementation of downloads – can be.
This latest version of Chrome will no doubt hit Beta soon, and before we know it we’ll all think this is how Chrome handled downloads on mobile all along. It’s a small change, that’s for sure, but as we said it’s the behavior here that matters the most. Users of Chrome on Windows, Mac or Linux have come to expect this sort of behavior when they download a file, so to see it finally hit mobile is nice. Those willing to try it out can go ahead and download the latest version of Chrome Dev from the Play Store.