The first taste of Chrome 8.0 is now available for download from Google. The Mountain View-based search giant released Google Chrome 8.0.552.0 for early adopters running the browser’s supported platforms, Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.
Served via the Dev channel, Chrome 8.0.552.0, the Build comes as a release from the early stages of the development process for the next major versions of Google’s open source browser.
Google Chrome 8.0.552.0 is a developer release intended for early adopters and for deployment into testing environments.
Users that are not familiar with the risks and glitches inherent with testing prerelease software should limit themselves at running Chrome 6.0 Stable, or Chrome 7.0 Beta at most.
Google announced the launch of Chrome 8.0.552.0 without much fanfare, and without providing any specific details related to the new features and capabilities brought to the table by the Build.
However, early adopters have already been able to test releases of Chromium, from the open source project behind Chrome, and the features already in place for Chromium 8.0 have transitioned to Chrome 8.0, as the browser graduated to the Dev channel.
Chrome 8.0 represents the results of Google’s efforts to catch up with Internet Explorer 9, especially in relation to hardware acceleration.
IE9 Beta, which was introduced in mid-September 2010, is the only browser to feature full hardware acceleration at this point, with rivals scrambling to catch up.
In this regard, Chrome 8.0 Dev is designed to offer enhanced hardware acceleration capabilities, in comparison to Chrome 7.0, that also took advantage of the power of the GPU (graphics processing unit) in order to better the browsing experience related to HTML5, text, media content, etc.
Just like with Internet Explorer 9, Chrome 8.0 is set up to leverage the graphics APIs (application programming interfaces) of the underlying operating system (DirectX for Windows), in order to blur the line separating Cloud and desktop application experiences in terms of performance and quality.
However, Google Chrome 8.0 continues to be in development, and it’s bound that the search giant will introduce additional new features into the browser.
Google Chrome 8.0 Dev for Windows is available for download here.
Google Chrome 7.0 Beta and 6.0 Stable for Windows are available for download here.
Internet Explorer 9 (IE9) Beta is available for download here.