Chrome 25 Beta for Android Adds Support for Flexbox, Dynamic CSS Units, CSS Filters and More

The latest Android release is great for developers as well

Chrome 25 Beta for Android is great news for users, who hadn't seen something new since early 2012, but it's great news, perhaps even more so, for developers as well. Since Chrome 18, the version in the Android stable channel, came out, Google has been hard at work adding new features.

Those features have been dumped all at once with Chrome 25 Beta, unlike the gradual progression on the desktop. In fact, developers should be familiar with most of the new things already from the desktop version.

There's now support for CSS Filters which enable web apps to manipulate images, i.e. apply all sorts of effects to give images the vintage, Instagram look (if you're into that sort of thing). This feature is prefixed.

Chrome 25 Beta for Android also brings support for the latest iteration of the Flexible Box (flexbox) Layout Module. The latest draft specs came out last summer and major browsers were quick to add support for them.

Also new is support for the vw, vh and vmin viewport units for CSS. These dynamic units are similar to simple percentage units in CSS, but they depend on the size of the viewport alone, not the size of their parent elements.

In that same vein, the latest Android Chrome adds support for CSS calc() which makes it possible to use mathematical expressions instead of actual units. This opens up a lot of new possibilities for web designers.

IndexDB has been unprefixed, meaning web developers can be assured that the database replacement works in a consistent way across devices, on the desktop and on the web.

Google also updated the way it resizes text to make it more readable on small screens. The feature is now in line with the method used by other browsers, meaning web developers have a better idea of what to expect and what viewers get when they zoom in on pages.

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