The beta version of the Chrome browser for Android smartphones and tablets has given the IT community a plethora of reasons to get excited, even from the earliest stages of development. Now it appears that the 26.0.1410.26 has become available and it’s packing some serious heat. In addition to the numerous glitch fixes and improvements to the old features, the latest 26 Beta update provides users with two mandatory options, which in our opinion should become standard for all mobile browsers:
- Password synchronization support
- Autofill synchronization support
What is the significance of these two additions, you ask? Well, let’s take a look.
After updating all your mobile browsers to the latest 26 Beta version, you can simply log into to your Chrome account and have the full array of passwords safely stored and ready to be entered.
Naturally, since some of you are already utilizing an alternative program for password management, this might not seem like a big deal. However, the introduction of this feature eliminates the need for an additional program or account, which saves time when logging in, memory on your Android smartphone/tablet and money, if you are currently paying for the service. Next stop…
Are you tired of having to manually enter your details every single time you are filling an online form? Are you frequently shopping for better deals online from your mobile and you want to keep the personal data ready for entry but you simply cannot trust certain websites enough? These are just two examples that reveal what a blessing the autofill synchronization of the new Android Chrome is!
There are, of course, hundreds of situations where you can save time and be certain that your personal and financial details are kept safe from prying eyes with the aid of mobile Chrome’s autofill. And the good news is that both the pass and autofill sync can be turned on/off if you don’t feel comfortable with them or you are taking a different approach, so it’s win-win either way.
Reiterating a few of the browser’s highlights
Sync is the word of the day with the Android Chrome, as one of the earliest editions of the app enables users to synchronize the mobile browser with the desktop one, so you’ll never have to go through the trouble of re-opening all those tables on your smartphone if you have to leave your workstation for a few minutes. Speaking of tabs, the glossy – maybe even eye-candy – transition from one to another can be activated in two ways:
- Tilting the smartphone back to scroll downwards and tilting it up to scroll forwards (not that the feature can also be turned off if you don’t really like it)
- Simply sliding left to right
The tabs are opened via the upper left action button and on the tablet version, the Chrome browser also features a neat little action bar underneath the tabs. Many other options are available in the beta version, such as the Incognito mode for that sneaky net surfing or, on the contrary, synchronizing the bookmarks on all the devices that Chrome is logged in on. But let’s talk functionality for a second.
Chrome is fast and versatile, but that’s not exclusively related to a quality code. Well, maybe just a little bit, considering that it has aced SunSpider (1904.4 milliseconds) and scored flawlessly on the Acid3 test. You do remember that this is just the beta version right? However, we have to point out that the browser is not exactly in the featherweight category when it comes to system resource usage, as the 44 MB of RAM it requires to run and the 0.3% of battery exhausted in less than one hour stand proof of that. These features might make it more suitable for the latest generation of Androids rather than the older ones that lack the juice for Chrome.
In the performance category, an option that further enhances browsing speed can be found in the Bandwidth management section. To put it simply, if you have a consistent data plan and you don’t mind the extra traffic, you can chose to have the links on your current page preload in order to speed up your browsing. Or you can turn it off.
See, the really nice thing about Chrome is that you always have a choice!