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Google has shared more details of its plan to replace Flash with HTML5 by default in Chrome. In September 2016, Chrome will block Flash content that loads behind the scenes, which the company estimates accounts for more than 90 percent of the Flash on the web. In December, Chrome will make HTML5 the default experience for central content, such as games and videos, except on sites that only support Flash. Flash has been on its way out for years. Not only is the tool a security nightmare, with new vulnerabilities popping up regularly, the market has been slowly but surely moving away from plugins in favor of HTML5. Chrome and Flash, in particular, have had a complicated relationship. While Flash is included in Google’s browser by default, it has been slowly but surely de-emphasized. In September 2015, Chrome 45 began automatically pausing less-important Flash content (ads, animations, and anything that isn’t “central to the webpage”). View the full article
Google knows that its Chrome browser is a serious consumer of RAM, but the development team is reportedly very aware of this, and are working on lowering Chrome's RAM consumption. Thanks to a Reddit AMA session, a Chrome for Android engineer said: "We are actively working on reducing battery usage and we are looking into when Chrome is in the foreground and in the background. Since its inception Chrome has been focusing on security and performance of the web across all supported platforms. Performance sometimes has come at the cost of resource usage, but given the importance of the mobile platform this is one of the top things we are looking into". View the full article
Google is requiring more Windows-based Chrome extensions to be installed from its Web Store and will enforce the same requirement on Mac users in a few months in an attempt to prevent users from inadvertently installing malicious titles. The move comes a year after Google first required Windows users to download extensions from the Chrome Web Store, a mandate that resulted in a 75-percent drop in user support requests seeking help uninstalling unwanted extensions. The policy wasn't enforced on the Windows developer channel, so developers of malicious extensions have increasingly embraced it as a medium for distributing their wares. View the full article
Google Chrome extensions are designed to improve or modify functionality that the web browser offers. Some extensions in the official Chrome Web Store have millions of users who all rely on the functionality their add-ons provides them with. While not as powerful as Firefox add-ons, Chrome extensions are easily powerful enough to manipulate websites that you visit, or communicate with a remote server. News about extension abuse reached the mainstream press recently. It all started when Amit Agarwal confessed that he sold a Chrome extension he created to a company that approached him via email. The company modified the extension and released the update to all existing users of it. Users who received the update noticed that the extension started to inject ads on web pages, which was then reflected on the user reviews page on the Chrome Web Store. View the full article