Google Unveils Latest Chrome Browser for Android

Also announced are the latest developer and beta versions of other Chrome browser and Chrome OS products.

Google's Chrome team is releasing Chrome 26 for Android, the newest stable version of its free Web browser that fully integrates with the Android mobile operating system.

The new Android version was announced in an April 3 post on Google's Chrome Releases blog by Jason Kersey of the Google Chrome team.

"Chrome for Android 26.0.1410.58 contains a number of updates, including capabilities for password synchronization, autofill synchronization and a variety of other performance and stability improvements, Kersey wrote. Also fixed was a flaw where a blank page would be loaded rather than a URL.

The password and autofill improvements means that Chrome for Android users will now be able to more easily access their passwords and autofill entries on their Android phones and tablets, according to an April 3 post by Google engineer Chris Hopman on the Google Chrome Blog.

"You can now access your saved passwords and autofill entries on your phone and tablet when you've signed in to Chrome, just like you have been able to do on your desktop and laptop computers," Hopman wrote. "In case you don't see this right away after upgrading, give it a few days as we complete rolling out the feature to all of you on the latest version of Chrome."

The previous version of Chrome for Android was release 25, which debuted in late February and included expanded support for HTML5, improved scrolling performance and faster interactive pages.

Chrome for Android provides a customized version of the popular browser that is built to run specifically on Android devices.

Now that the stable version of the Chrome browser for Android has been released for download by users, the Chrome team has established the next beta version of Chrome for Android, which will be adopted as the stable version of the browser in about six weeks, per Google's release schedule.

The latest Chrome Beta for Android, Version 26.0.1410.49, contains several new fixes for problems such as the disappearance of video controls for small screen embedded videos and for poor scrolling performance in, according to a March 27 post on the Chrome Releases blog.

Android users have been able to try out the beta version of the Chrome browser on their devices since January, when the Chrome team decided to give users access to the beta code before it reached the stable release phase.

The capabilities are available for Android developers and other users who are running Android 4.0 or later on their devices.

The new Chrome beta channel has been created for Android phone and tablet computers directly through Google Play and includes some of the biggest developer updates to Chrome for Android since its launch in February 2012.

The Chrome beta channel gives developers and other users the chance to see and use many features that are in development for the Android version. Users running Windows, Mac and Linux versions of the Chrome browser already have similar access to beta versions as well as to the stable release versions.

Developers don't have to choose to ditch the release version of Chrome to try out the beta channel on their devices. Instead, the beta version can be installed alongside the user's current version of Chrome for Android. The beta version will request additional permissions when using Chrome Sync for the first time.

Google also announced that its developers are hard at work on the developer channel version of the next Google Chrome Browser 27 for Mac, Windows, Linux and Chrome OS, which was posted to the development channel on April 2, according to a post on the Chrome Releases blog.

The present version of the Chrome browser, version 26, was released in late March to the public after receiving several notable new features, including improved spell-checking and the ability to create individual profiles so that multiple users can keep their own bookmarks and other preferences.

Chrome celebrated its fourth birthday in September 2012 and has accomplished a lot since its launch. In June 2012, Chrome surpassed Microsoft's Internet Explorer as the world's most used browser for the first time, and it has added lots of useful features and strengths over the years to encourage even more users to adopt it.