Google has barely released Chrome 1.0, but the company is already hard at work on version 2.0 of its web browser. They released a pre-beta for Chrome 2.0, which comes with a lot of new features, including ones that should’ve already been in Chrome 1.0. In addition, it seems as if the Mac and Linux versions of Chrome are getting closer.
Chrome 2.0 has a whole slew of improvements up its sleeve. It obviously comes with the latest and greatest WebKit relase, adding support for CSS gradients, CSS canvas drawing, and partial implementations of CSS reflections and CSS masks, in addition to a lot of bug reports and speed improvements of course. The latest WebKit release also enables support for full-page zooming (not just text, but all elements) and autoscroll.
Chrome 2.0 will also feature form autocomplete by remembering what you typed into the form before, a feature sorely missing from Chrome 1.0. Several improvements to the spell checker have also been made, such as the ability to turn it on and off per text field, as well as the ability to change language without having to go to the options menu.
Support for browsing profiles has also been added, along with the ability to start each tab or window in a different browser profile. You can now also dock dragged tabs into various positions (for instance, dragging it to the side of your display will make it take up half the screen). Chrome 2.0 will also come with new window frames for XP and Vista, allowing for window cascading and tiling.
Experimental user-scripting support is also coming to Chrome (like Greasemonkey), by launching the pre-beta with the
--enable-user-scripts flag. More information on this is available in the documentation.
Interesting are the references to the Mac and Linux versions:
New network code. Google Chrome now has its own implementation of the HTTP network protocol (we were using the WinHTTP library on Windows, but need common code for Mac and Linux). We fixed a few bugs in HTTP authentication and made Google Chrome more compatible with servers that reply with invalid HTTP responses. We need feedback on anything that’s currently broken, particularly with proxy servers, secure (https) sites, and sites that require log in.
Here’s to hoping that Mac and Linux users will soon finally be able to use Chrome natively. Chrome is my browser of choice, and I would love to be able to use it on my Mac and Linux installations as well.