Chrome 64 for Android Shortens Unwieldily Long URLs When You Share Them

Chrome for Android

In the latest stable channel build for Android, Chrome 64, there is a new automatic URL shorter for those long, unwieldily URLs from shopping sites and other locations.  The new feature was uncovered by the team over at Android Police and should make sharing of URLs a little bit easier.

The new feature is used when you use the Share feature in Chrome for Android.  When you share a URL or copy it to the clipboard, a smaller version of the URL copied.  You can then share it with whatever apps or contacts as you would normally.

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How To Enable Progress Web Apps in Chrome

Enabling Progress Web Apps in Chrome

Progressive Web Apps, or PWAs, are the next big trend in browsing tech.  Designed to give an app-like experience on the web, PWAs are something that Google has been pushing hard as well as Apple and Microsoft.  All three companies, as well as Firefox are all planning to roll out support for the technology this year but Google appears to have the jump.

With Chrome 64, you have the ability to change flags within the browser to enable Progress Web Apps.  While technically not support – generally most flag settings are officially supported – it does work and you can give it a try to see what all the hubbub is about before it gets here in full swing later this year.  In this How To, I’ll show you which flags to enable to try out a PWA experience.

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Chrome Browser Ad Blocker Goes Live

Chrome Icon

Starting today, the Chrome browser for Windows, MacOS and Linux will start blocking intrusive adverts on sites to give a better user experience.  Google had announced that these types of ads would be blocked back in December starting today after announcing their agreement with the Coalition for Better Ads last summer.

If you don’t remember, for desktops, ads that do the following risk being blocked:

  • pop-up ads
  • auto-play video ads with sound
  • prestitial ads with countdown
  • large sticky ads

For those who have the ad blocker enabled in Chrome on their desktop, you will no longer see these ads.

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Minor Update Lands in The Chrome OS Stable Channel

Chrome OS Build 61 App Launcher

A small, incremental update to Chrome OS has been released that should be landing on everyone’s devices over the course of the next week or so.  The new version remains in the Chrome 64 train and is build 64.0.3282.144 (Platform version: 10176.68.0).

The release notes on this new build are pretty limited, indicating that it addresses several bug and security issues with the first Chrome 64 build released for Chrome OS earlier this month.  To check if the update is available for your system, type chrome://help in the browser bar and check for the update.  The release notes do indicate that systems with Android app support won’t see it for another few days yet.

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Chrome 64 Arrives on The Stable Channel for Chrome OS

Chrome OS Build 61 App Launcher

The much anticipated update to Chrome 64 has arrived in the Chrome OS Stable channel.  The new version is build 64.0.3282.134 (Platform version: 10176.65.0) and it contains several new features along with the normal bug fixes and security updates that come with every new build of Chrome OS.

Here is the rundown of the new features in this build:

  • Take screenshots faster on Chromebooks with a 360-degree hinge by pressing the power and volume down buttons at the same time
  • Revamped Intent Picker for Play Applications (Same window by default with override)
  • Lockscreen Performance Improvements
  • Enable VPN for Google Play Apps
  • Enhancements to our protected media pipeline for Android
  • Android Container Auto Update Optimizations
  • Touchscreen pairing settings

In addition to these new features, there is now a flag you can set to enabled split screen viewing.  This was something that was found in a commit last month.  Android apps can now run in the background too.

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Chrome OS Beta Channel Sees A Third Chrome 64 Based Update

Chrome OS Build 61 App Launcher

The Chrome OS Beta Channel has a new Chrome 64 based update rolling out, its third overall in the 64 train and second update in less than a week.  The new version is build 64.0.3282.134 (Platform version: 10176.65.0) and is rolling out now.  If you are in the Beta Channel, you can force the update by typing chrome://help in the browser’s omnibar and checking for an update.

As you would expect, this new build is a bug fix release as the Chromium team gets feedback from testers and preps the build for general availability in the Stable channel.  There are no new features according to the release log.

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Chrome for Android Update Brings Rendering Crash Fix

Google Chrome for Android

A new update to Chrome for Android has been released into the Play Store, bringing a fix to a rendering crash that was impacting some users.  The new version is build 64.0.3282.137 for those keeping score at home.  This update follows the original release of Chrome 64 for Android last month.

This update is purely a bug fix release, addressing a rendering crash that was impacting a small number of users as well as a fix for issues around geo location notifiers.  Otherwise, there are general bug fixes and improvements in the update.  You can read the full change log here but there are not any new features.

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