By Jonathan Charles | Jun 29, 2012 11:08 AM EDT
Google has announced and launched its popular Chrome browser for iPhone and iPad devices, bringing integration with Chrome for desktop and synchronisation across iPhone and iPads. Here are the details.
The Verge posted a hands-on across both versions; Chrome will ask users to sign into a Google Account, which can be skipped, and swiping between tabs is as easy as dragging across either side of the screen. A blue bar at the top shows a Web site loading, but doesn't disappear like on Safari when the Web site has loaded.
Hitting the tab button in the top right-hand corner, pressing New Tab and pressing the button in the bottom right-hand corner shows tabs open on other devices including laptops and computers. Users can also edit bookmarks, providing an account is linked.
A menu setting on the top bar allows sites to be starred, the private browsing Incognito mode to be activated, and other functions including Request Desktop Site and searching for specific words can be performed. Siri is also supported for search, or Google Voice.
When entering a password on a Web site, like the desktop version Chrome for iOS will prompt users with options to always save the password or never. That transitions over to the other version of the browsers when synced.
Chrome for iPad is basically the same experience, because of the 9.7 inch screen, more closely resembling the desktop version of Chrome. Switching to Incognito mode is done via a toggle on the right-hand side of the top bar, and there's a persistent star icon for favoriting sites. There's once again the drop-down menu with the aforementioned functionality.
Hitting New Tab presents the Most Visited Web sites when swiping to the left, and bookmarks on the default screen - or swiping to the right - are represented via square thumbnails. Users can also look at other devices from this view.
Checking out a Web site on one device and refreshing the site when loaded will show it on the other device. Tabs can also be closed and rearranged, like the desktop version, on the iPad.
The result is that Chrome is better than Safari in functionality, though a little slower. For users who want to experience the desktop browser on a mobile device, then the iPad version is almost identical. The only real complaint is that the Omnibar - Google's name for an address and search bar combined - is persistent.
Google Chrome for iOS is available now.
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