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Chrome now has Cast built-in, can share tabs in Hangouts

Chrome now has Cast built-in, can share tabs in Hangouts

Google Cast has definitely come a long way, from an odd but category-defining HDMI dongle to something that almost every new connected device, from speakers to TVs, supports. Almost ironically, it has also made “Cast” more invisible, like a feature that you expect to be just there, no setup required. That is definitely the thinking behind Google’s new big feature for its Chrome, which bakes Cast functionality right into the browser. And just to prove that Hangouts isn’t really dead, that functionality extends to Google’s now more business-minded communication service as well.

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Google Chrome puts Flash to pasture starting next month

Google Chrome puts Flash to pasture starting next month

There really is no stopping Flash's demise. Not when all the major browsers have ganged up on it. The latest to pull the plug is Google's Chrome, which is kickstarting the process to Flash's exit from the Web scene starting in September. Of course, that doesn't mean that annoying ads, especially video ones, will be going away forever, though some will undoubtedly see some downtime on Chrome browsers. It just means that, eventually, they will be taking on a more resource efficient, standards compliant form.

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Chrome for Android now loads videos faster and uses less energy

Chrome for Android now loads videos faster and uses less energy

Chrome for Android is now up to version 52, and with it comes a handful of benefits, not the least of which is demonstrably faster video load speeds. Per a demonstration video Google posted, the browser now loads a YouTube video five times faster than before, and the playback is smoother than it was in the previous version. As well, video playback is now more energy efficient, meaning you won’t see your phone or tablet’s battery die so quickly.

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Browser power test shows Microsoft Edge only marginally better

Browser power test shows Microsoft Edge only marginally better

Microsoft took the gloves off when it claimed that its Edge web browser outperformed the competition in terms of power efficiency. While Google and Mozilla have yet to make official counterclaims, Opera published a post showing that, at least with Power Saving enabled, its browser actually tops the rest. So which one is telling the truth? PCWorld conducts its own test and discovers that, while Microsoft did have an edge over the others, its results arent's as dramatic as either claim them to be.

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Chrome bug aids in pirating Netflix, Amazon videos

Chrome bug aids in pirating Netflix, Amazon videos

DRM, or Digital Rights Management (some call it Digital Restrictions Management), is a class of technologies and software aimed to protect copyrighted material from unauthorized access, a.k.a. piracy. But what if that DRM itself is guilty of helping pirates do exactly that? That is somewhat the position Google is finding itself in when the DRM technology it uses in its Chrome browser has been found to have a bug that actually makes it easier to lift encrypted videos streamed from the likes of Netflix or Amazon Prime and spread them around illegally.

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Vysor can now wirelessly mirror you Android in Chrome

Vysor can now wirelessly mirror you Android in Chrome

Koushik "Koush" Dutta is renowned in the Android community as the creator of the ClockworkMod recovery tool or CWM. Of course, he has grown out of that role some time ago and has released a good number of apps that push the boundaries of Android. One of those is Vysor, which lets you mirror and control your Android screen inside the Chrome web browser. Now that handy tool has also grown up, listing wireless connectivity as its latest feature to let users control their Android devices from their Chrome browser, no cables needed.

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Opera challenges Microsoft Edge’s battery saving claims

Opera challenges Microsoft Edge’s battery saving claims

When you just recently released a product or feature that promised to significantly save users some laptop battery life, you would naturally be unsettled when, out of nowhere, someone suddenly claims to have an even better "regular" product. That is probably what browser maker Opera felt when Microsoft surprisingly published a blog post that extolled its own Edge browser's battery efficiency. Now Opera is refuting Microsoft's claims by presenting its own hard evidence of how Opera's new power saving feature trumps them all.

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Microsoft boasts Edge saves battery most, Chrome the worst

Microsoft boasts Edge saves battery most, Chrome the worst

Once upon a time, web browsers competed on the basis of rendering performance and quality. Then they moved on to extensions and add-ons. Now it seems that the next arena will be in power consumption. As users become more battery conscious, thanks to a slowdown in battery tech innovation, they will start looking to programs that eat up more battery than they should. Unsurprisingly, Microsoft boasts that its Edge web browser is the most efficient at power management. And in the same breath, points to Google Chrome as the worst.

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Firefox Containers are an experiment in multiple identities

Firefox Containers are an experiment in multiple identities

Web browsing is no longer a one browser per person activity. And that's not just about a family sharing a single computer or tablet. Even a single user sometimes needs to use the web as different persons. And no, this isn't a case of schizophrenia. In order to support the not so unusual use case of a single person having different accounts, personas, and habits when browsing the web, the Firefox team is playing around with "Containers" that separate those virtual users, and their data, from each other.

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Safari will block Flash by default in macOS Sierra

Safari will block Flash by default in macOS Sierra

Another one of the final nails has been hammered into the coffin of Adobe Flash. The latest version of Apple's Safari browser that will be included in the release of macOS Sierra has been revealed to block plugins like Flash and Java while users navigate the internet. As the newest version of Apple's desktop OS, mac OS Sierra — revealed at WWDC this week — and Safari 10 will instead default to HTML5 whenever it's available.

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Opera’s battery saver goes public, new mobile concept coming

Opera’s battery saver goes public, new mobile concept coming

Smartphones aren't the only ones in dire need of sometimes drastic battery saving features. Even laptops, with their significantly larger batteries, need some power saving loving. That's why when Opera announced that it had a new built-in browser feature that promised to give back 50% more battery life, there was understandably a good amount of interest. Now you can verify that for yourself as Opera just launched version 38 of its desktop web browser that bakes in this battery saver feature.

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Google Chrome to completely phase out Flash by Q4 2016. Almost.

Google Chrome to completely phase out Flash by Q4 2016. Almost.

Once and briefly the darling of interactive Web content creators, Flash has fallen by the wayside and has become more of a liability than a feature. Even Adobe has taken steps to de-emphasize Flash content in its own tools, while still keeping backwards compatibility a thing. In its stead is HTML5, which covers almost everything Flash can do, especially videos. To hasten Flash's demise from the Web, Google will disable Flash by default in its Chrome Web browser before the year ends. That said, it will still actually ship Flash even then, just in case.

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