Google is now delivering the update to Chrome version 87, and this one’s going to bring some things everybody wants. But those changes aren’t necessarily resting at the surface in plain sight. That’s because the biggest changes are all behind the scenes.
To begin with, Google says that Chrome will start up 25-percent faster and load pages 7-percent faster. And it’s doing so while using less RAM than it has been — potentially bringing it more in line with Microsoft’s Chromium-based Edge. The browser accomplishes that by prioritizing tabs. Specifically, active tabs as compared to those that aren’t open.
Google says that will improve CPU usage by up to 5-times over previous versions of Chrome. And Chrome will save battery after the update to version 87 too. By as much as 1.25-hours, according to Google.
So where are the user-facing Chrome 87 changes?
Chrome is also getting some new user-facing features with this update. Not least of all, Google says that Chrome for Android will load pages almost instantly during backward and forward navigation.
But bigger changes still are in store for Chromebooks. Chrome OS devices will be the first to receive a new feature that lets users search directly for open tabs. That works through the URL Omnibox, with users simply typing in what they’re looking for and Chrome searching it out. That works across tabs too. So users can keep multiple tabs open across multiple windows and Chrome will still be able to find any open tab.
And that’s regardless of which window it’s actually running in. The update will be delivered on other platforms “soon.”
Now, Chromebooks won’t see the update until December 1. But that’s coming up soon enough for those users who need multiple multi-tab Chrome windows open at once.
Yet another key change coming to all desktop platforms is the ability to search for Settings. For instance, Google says users can type “edit passwords” or “delete history” and navigate directly to those settings in the Settings menu. That’s directly from the URL bar. The feature will be expanded later on to include more quick-access settings.
But when and what else is coming?
Now, as per Google’s announcement, users may have to wait sometime before the new features arrive. A “few weeks” at least. Other new features are in the works too, including a new card-based UI to help users pick up where they left off from the “new tab” page. To begin with, the company wants to experiment with helping users via that UI to find recipes and shopping results they recently viewed. The entertainment category is planned for addition next year.