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Google Chrome 3.0 launches: faster, more features

Chrome 3.0 boosts JavaScript performance by 25%

Google yesterday launched version 3 of its Google Chrome web browser. Google Chrome 3.0 keeps the pressure on competing tools by boosting JavaScript performance by 25 percent versus the latest stable release.

Improvements to tabs and video, audio handling round out the major new features in the release of Google Chrome 3.0, which can be downloaded here.

The Chrome 3.0 update comes about a year after Google Chrome made its debut.

"This release comes hot on the heels of 51 developer, 21 beta and 15 stable updates and 3,505 bugfixes in the past year," Google writes on its blog.

Google Chrome has only grabbed a 3.5 percent share of the global market, but that does put it ahead of longer-standing Opera and Apple Safari already, according to StatCounter. Microsoft Internet Explorer leads the pack with 58 percent and Mozilla Firefox has better than 31 percent.

The stats are more impressive with more tech-savvy users, boding well for Chrome's future. Yesterday, 5.05 percent of visitors to PCAdvisor.co.uk used Chrome, although 6 percent used Opera. IE had 48 percent, and Firefox 32 percent, followed by Safari (4.5 percent).

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Of course the Google Chrome browser also set the stage for the Google making big news about its Chrome OS earlier this summer.

The new Google Chrome features include more customisable tab pages (you can nix parts of the page and re-arrange thumbnails of pages).

Google has simplified use of its Omnibox, the all-in-one search bar and web address bar, via icons that help distinguish pages and sites from one another.

Also, support for HTML5 video tags makes running embedded videos smoother, avoiding the need to use a plug-in.

It's been another busy week at Google, which also introduced a beta version of a new online news browsing program dubbed Fast Flip (see: 'Google Fast Flip aims to boost news browsing'). Google also announced today that it will provide cloud computing services for US government agencies.

See also: Opera Mini 5 mobile web browser released

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