Google rolled out Chrome 12 to beta May 9, loading up the build with better graphics by adding support for hardware-accelerated 3D CSS, and bolstering its Safe Browsing technology.
The 3D CSS lets developers add 3D effects to Web content. Meanwhile, the fresh Safe Browsing release will still proect users from malware and phishing Websites, but now it will warn users before they download some types of malicious files.
Users may also now delete Flash Local Shared Objects (LSOs), which allows Websites to store information on a user's computer using forms of local data storage, right from Chrome's settings.
Previously, users could only delete Flash LSOs using an online settings application on Adobe's Website. Google worked with the Flash maker to affect this change.
Google also fortified screen reader support in Chrome for JAWS, NVDA and VoiceOver. This software that describes the contents of the screen using synthesized speech or braille to help people who are blind or visually impaired.
The big news here, though, is that Google as promised has lost the Google Gears plug-in, which enabled offline support for content through caching and other technologies.
Google has phased out Gears in favor of the increasingly powerful offline capabilities in HTML5.
"We're excited about the potential of HTML5 to enable powerful web applications, and we hope that Google Gears rests in peace," Google noted in its brief eulogy.
Meanwhile, I'm reporting live from Google I/O today and tomorrow. Android lineup is today; Chrome tomorrow. We'll see then what Google's plans are to bolster its 12 percent market share.
Expect a Chrome OS notebook from Samsung for sure.