Exactly a week after launching the stable version of Chrome 26 for Android, Google has released Chrome 27 beta for Android. Among the new features are fullscreen support on phones, tab history on tablets, simpler searching, data savings from the experimental data compression feature, and client-side certificate support.
You can download version 27.0.1453.49 right now directly from Google Play. Remember: since this is a beta release, you won’t find it via the store’s search function; you’ll need to use the link.
The first two features are fairly straightforward. To access the fullscreen function on phones, just scroll down the page and the toolbar will disappear (sidenote: full screen support for iOS arrived Chrome 26 stable yesterday). When you scroll back up, the toolbar returns automatically. To use the new tab history on tablets, long press the browser back button to view what you’ve been browsing.
Next up, we have “simpler searching.” Google is referring to a change it is looking to implement in regards to the way its search engine (and possibly other search engines) work in Chrome. The company has been experimenting with leaving the search query in the omnibox, removing the need for a second search box on the results page, since December 2012. So far, however, only beta and other test versions of Chrome have seen the change.
Speaking of experimental features, the data savings one isn’t really new, but it has been tweaked since the Chrome 26 beta. Before, you had to enable it under chrome://flags but now can see your data savings by just going to “Bandwidth Management” in Settings and enabling “Reduce Data Usage.”
For reference, here’s the official Chrome 27 beta for Android changelog:
- Fullscreen on phones – Scroll down the page and the toolbar will disappear.
- Simpler searching – Searching from the omnibox will keep your search query visible in the omnibox, making it easier to edit, and show more on your search result page.
- Client-side certificate support – You can now access sites that require you to use a certificate and Chrome will allow you to select an installed certificate.
- Tab history on tablets – Long press the browser back button to view your tab history.
Again, this is a beta, so here are the known issues:
- Noticeable lag in text entry on some text fields.
- chrome://history sometimes show duplicate items.
- Opening tabs is sometimes slow.
- Pages may flicker sometimes, especially during navigation.
Chrome 27 should be out sometime next month. The desktop version is currently also in beta.
Top Image credit: T. Al Nakib