Google has just announced that the 64-bit version of the Google Chrome on Windows has reached stable status and is now rolling out in version 37 of the browser. While most of the architectural changes happen under the hood, users are promised to feel the benefits of the switch to 64-bit in areas of performance, stability, and security.
“64-bit” might have become a buzzword in the mobile industry, but our desktops, laptops, and their corresponding operating systems have migrated over to that architecture a long time ago. Some apps, however, still haven’t and Google Chrome is one of the latecomers. After testing this 64-bit build of the browser, Google is finally ready to roll out the version to users who want to experience the benefits.
But what are those benefits? According to Google and user feedback, the 64-bit Chrome is reported to be much faster and more stable. For one, the VP9 codec used for HD YouTube videos showed a 15 percent improvement in performance. The rendering engine is noted to also be more stable than the 32-bit version. The migration to 64-bit also allowed Google to better implement security measures against vulnerabilities related to system memory layout.
There are, however, some drawbacks as well, but very minimal according to Google. The most glaring issue, perhaps is related to the use of NPAPI or Netscape Plug-in APIs. The 64-bit version of Chrome naturally only supports 64-bit plugins. Java and Silverlight have been tested to work on this new version of Chrome. Ironically, Google’s own Voice and Earth plugins don’t. Hangouts, however, work just fine.
Google has also released a new stable version of Chrome for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Version 37 improves font rendering on Windows, adds new extension APIs for developers, and includes a whole bunch of stability and security fixes across the board, The 64-bit Chrome version, however, isn’t included in this update, as it comes via a separate download, currently limited to the Windows platform only.