GOOGLE HAS LAUNCHED version 76 of its all-conquering Chrome browser, at least in beta.
Amongst the big changes in this edition is another big step on the road to killing off Adobe's flea-ridden Flash runtime, once and for all. (In actual fact, Adobe is killing it in 2021, but sssshhhh).
Because this is the first time that Flash is completely switched off by default - no 'click to run', no opt-outs - if you want to use Flash at all, you'll have to turn it on in the chrome://flags menu.
Also new in Chrome 76 is the return of the paywalled site's worst nightmare. Incognito Mode is not detectable by using scripts anymore, meaning that those sites that give you, say, three free stories a month, won't be able to tell when you've used them up.
Dark Mode, the holy grail of tech that has so many of us positively wetting our pants every time a new app gets it and has undoubtedly changed the face of tech, now has a new trick up its sleeve - a couple of lines of code will allow website designers to switch to a dark version of their website when they detect a dark mode enabled browser. It's all just so exciting we could melt.
Elsewhere, there are improvements to the Payments API which should speed up e-commerce, and for those who like a progressive web app, you'll now get an indicator within the Omnibox (address bar) which will double as an "install" button - so you'll be able to access your favourite web apps with a single click.
These are far from the only near features - there are hundreds of changes covering all kinds of tweaks, nips and tucks, many of which you'd never know about unless you were looking, listed on the Chromium Blog.
Chrome 76 beta is available now to the intrepid, whilst Chrome 76 Stable will arrive for the rest of us in around 6 weeks time. μ
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