Google is bringing performance improvements to its last 2020 update of Chrome, Chrome 87. Tab throttling, improved resource management, and several user-facing additions will be part of the final update.
According to Google, version 87 of Chrome will represent the ‘'largest gain in Chrome performance in years.” It features a 5x reduction in CPU usage by prioritizing active tabs over background content, resulting in 1.25 hours increase in battery life.
Another performance improvement feature of Chrome 87 is that it starts up 25% faster than before and load pages up to 7% faster. This improvement is a result of the browser being aware of what tabs are visible to users and optimizing resources for those ones over hidden pages.
Chrome is also now providing users a ‘search for tab’ option, with which they can see a list of what’s open across all windows and then search for different tabs. The option will work for Chrome OS initially and later for other desktop platforms.
Moreover, the Chrome Omnibox will now surface Chrome Actions or shortcuts to common settings, such as clear browsing data, delete history, or edit passwords.
The New Tab Page will soon start surfacing recently-visited and related content cards, according to Google, to help users pick up where they left off while browsing the web. The option will provide its functionality in areas like cooking and shopping initially and will expand to entertainment related content next year.
Google is also introducing a new PDF viewer to Chrome 87. It features a navigation drawer that shows a thumbnail preview of all pages in the document. Zoom controls will also be provided, including the ability to fit to width/page and rotate, pen and highlighter tools, and a two-page view.
The safety check feature that Google released earlier this year is part of the 87 version for mobiles. Other additions include a ‘sign-in to Chrome’ prompt on Android, pan, tilt and zoom controls for websites on compatible cameras, and auto filling saved log-in details for Chrome on iOS. The ‘sign in to Chrome’ is for Android users to access or save payment methods and passwords.
Other important news about Chrome 87 is that Google Cloud Print and ‘save to Google Drive’ in the print dialogue will stop working at the beginning of next year.
Chrome 87 will also block macOS, Windows, Linux, and Chrome OS users from downloading non-safe file types, (like .pdf and .docx) over HTTP on an HTTPS page. Warnings about image, audio, video, and text formats will also be shown.