Chrome Apps will continue to live on until next year

Google had a grand vision for Chrome, one that included treating web apps as first-class citizens, a vision that almost saw its fulfillment in Chrome OS. Chrome Apps, however, didn't exactly fly on their own and was eventually made redundant by the more browser-agnostic and standardized Progressive Web Apps or PWAs. That said, Chrome Apps did gather a few true believers and users, especially among its enterprise customers, causing Google to now push back its earlier plans to sunset Chrome Apps until June next year.

The idea of Chrome Apps was novel and exciting back in a time when web apps were still in constant flux. These days, however, they have become a platform to reckon with and, perhaps to Google's secret disappointment, grown to eclipse Chrome. PWA is the name of the game these days and Google has decided to focus its resources on those instead at the expense of obsoleting its own Chrome Apps platform.

Easier said than done since Google pushed Chrome Apps hard on users, developers, and especially enterprise customers. It earlier decided to end support for Chrome Apps on Windows, Mac, and Linux by December this year for both regular users and enterprise customers alike. That may not have sat well with the latter and Google is now giving Chrome Apps a life extension.

It has already stopped accepting new Chrome Apps into its Chrome store last March but Chrome Apps for regular users on Windows, Mac, and Linux will no longer be supported on June 2021 instead of June 2020 as earlier planned. Enterprise customers as well as regular users on Chrome OS will still see support for Chrome Apps until June 2022.

What hasn't changed, is that latter date, when Chrome Apps will completely become unsupported on its last bastion, Chrome OS, thereby ending support on all platforms, consumer and enterprise. Chrome Apps may still work beyond that point but they will no longer receive any updates. Google also reassures Chrome users that extensions will continue to be a thing as a completely different and separate platform exclusive to the web browser.