Another new version of the world’s most popular internet browser has come, almost a month and a half after Chrome 90 was released to the stable channel on Windows, Mac, and Linux. On Tuesday, Chrome 91 entered the stable channel.
Chrome 91 has just begun to roll out to the first few phones, and though there aren’t many modifications on the surface, there are a lot of changes if you know where to look. On Android, the most noticeable visual changes will almost certainly be updated webpage buttons and forms, such as those seen in our weekend surveys. But there’s more to it than that. Let’s get started.
Saves battery life
Google is providing web developers with features that may extend the life of your phone. Sites can now suggest that your browser slow down specific operations that aren’t critical to your experience, starting with Chrome 91. Websites, for instance, can tell your browser to lower framerates or permit for slower script speeds.
The steps can be taken even before your phone’s battery is nearly drained, but they’re primarily intended to assist phones in conserving energy in ways that don’t degrade the user experience on websites while in power saving mode. Google cites video or video-conferencing sites as instances of sites that consume a lot of CPU power.
Upgraded SMS OTP autofill
The WebOTP API, which was first introduced in Chrome 84, has been improved and encompassed in Chrome 91 features. It enables websites to get one-time passwords delivered over SMS, which are commonly used to validate phone numbers or as a second factor when logging into various online services (you should always opt for SMS-less solutions when possible for enhanced security, though). When needed, Chrome 91 now permits so-called cross-origin iframes to access your OTP code. That comes in useful when you’re shopping online and your bank sends you a form to validate your credit card. That form should now also be able to generate OTP codes.
Innovative form control visuals
Many websites still utilize standard HTML buttons, forms, and checkboxes to allow users to fill out forms, but they’re starting to seem a little antiquated. Microsoft took on the task of redesigning them for its Chromium-based Edge browser, and the new aesthetics have already found their way into Google Chrome 83 for desktops. They’re now available on Chrome for Android. The old grey gradients have been replaced with brighter blue and white combinations. While CSS allows many websites to create their own styles, the few areas that still utilise basic HTML are getting a makeover.
“Find in page” learns to see hidden text
Obviously, you can use the overflow menu in the upper right corner to search for text on a webpage by tapping the “Find in page” entry? Once websites adopt support for this way, you’ll be able to find hidden text using that way as well, with websites dynamically enlarging the menus where that content is concealed – one of the best Chrome 91 features indeed. CSS is the key to all of this. A new option allows websites to declare that while some text is hidden, users should be able to locate it when searching for it. When dealing with collapsed FAQ sections or Google’s own help sites with their nested menus, this will come in handy. So, “Find in page” learns to see hidden text is what is new in Chrome 91.
Improved web games
The GravitySensor API was first launched as a test in Chrome 90 and has now been polished to the point where it can be activated by default. Google hopes to make it easier for developers to obtain data from gravity sensors with it. To infer gravity, web developers must now rely on manually obtaining values from the accelerator sensor, which can be erroneous based on the sensor’s precision. Developers will be able to directly access that data using the new GravitySensor API. If developers take use of this, motion-based web games and apps could become more realistic.
At least on your desktop, Google is making it much easier for websites to reach your clipboard whenever you want to paste material. The feature was first introduced in Chrome 90, however it will only be enabled by default in Chrome 91. Google intends copying and pasting to be as easy as dragging and dropping things onto websites. In prior versions of Chrome, you couldn’t just copy (or Ctrl+c) a file from your file manager and paste (or Ctrl+v) it to a webpage. Because websites rarely have native access to your file explorer’s path, which you’ve simply duplicated there, this is the case. Copy-and-paste improvement, one of the best Chrome 91 features, would eliminate the need for drag-and-drop or those annoying file picker dialogues when adding files to a website.
Shared credentials on affiliated sites
Here’s another thing about what is new in Chrome 91, that is, Chrome’s password manager struggles with accounts that are shared across numerous domains, such as your Google Account, which you use for everything from google.com to google.ca to youtube.com. That’s why Chrome 91 is beginning to test a feature that lets websites indicate that they share data with other websites, allowing Google’s password manager to enable autofill across numerous sites without you needing to tell it to. Because this feature is still being rolled out in Chrome 91 and sites must actively support it, it may take some time before you experience any real-world benefits.
Smaller but worth-noticing Chrome 91 features
- Hiding the reading list on desktops
- Changed icons for dark and light mode
- Link capturing for Progressive Web Apps
- Suggested file name and location for the File System Access API