Chrome 13 Stabilises For Launch With New Features

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Google’s Chrome 13 browser declared stable with Instant Pages, print preview, better Omnibox and bug fixes

Google has declared Chrome browser version 13 stable (Chrome 13.0.782.107), fixing several bugs and turning the search engine’s new Instant Pages feature on by default for the broader masses.

The next step in the Google Instant predictive search technology, Instant Pages automatically renders Web pages in the background, anticipating a user clicking on the top-slot find in a Google search. To do this, the company has developed a pre-rendering technology that prepares the top search in the background while a user chooses which link to click. This saves users another two to five seconds on typical searches.

Ideally, this technology removes the latency many Web pages exhibit when users click on them. This could, in turn, attract more people to use Chrome, which has a 13.5 percent market share worldwide.

Print Preview And Favourites Omnibox

Also with Chrome 13, print preview is available for Windows and Linux users. The technology, which as yet is not available for Macs, leverages Google’s built-in PDF viewer and a “print to PDF” option.

Finally, the Chrome’s Omnibox address bar and search box has been improved to bring users back to pages they have visited before much more easily.

Users need only to type part of the Web page’s address or title to find matching pages from their search history in the dropdown menu. There has been talk of the Omnibox going away; clearly that’s not the case in this iteration.

A major focus of the 5,200 improvements in the browser has been bug fixes. Google and participating third-party experts found and plugged 30 of them, as the search engine paid out $17,000 to bug squashers. “Miaubiz” earned $7,500 for detecting various exploits, including $1,000 each for so-called “use after free” exploits.

Sergey Glazunov, a fixture among the bug hunters, netted $3,000 total. That included $1,500 apiece for finding a cross-origin script injection and cross-origin violation in base URI handling. Peruse the complete list of found flaws and payouts in this Chrome blog post.

In other Chrome-related news, Google is now making it possible for developers in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the UK to complete merchant account sign up and start adding their paid apps to the Chrome Web Store.

Google, which last month made the In App Payments API to enable developers to receive payments for applications they sell in the Chrome Web Store available in 140 countries, also added the ability to target or exclude specific markets.

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