Google Makes Updates to Supposedly Speed-Up Chrome

Google Chrome

Yesterday, Google Chrome 45 was made available to existing browser users via an update. In a blog post detailing features of the latest version of Chrome, Google product manager Ryan Schoen talks about how the update would help users experience less memory drain — and, potentially, extended battery life on laptops — through three new tech upgrades.

When re-opening Chrome after it’s been closed, previously open tabs will now load in order of most to least recently viewed (instead of the previous left-to-right startup); and, when users’ computers are running low on available memory, the browser will cease restoring tabs in order to save what space is left.

Chrome the Memory Hog
gif via Lifehacker

In addition, Google Chrome 45 will detect when open tabs aren’t busy loading resources on the current webpage, and use the “free time” to clean up old, unused memory. (Sidenote: why Chrome hasn’t been doing this all along — beyond me). Schoen notes that, on average, 10% of memory can be freed up through this technique; though, he adds, this number can jump to nearly a quarter in the case of Gmail and other resource-heavy webpages.

Finally, as Chrome — and, on a larger scale, Google as a whole  — is trying to rid the world of Flash, an “auto-pause” control has been introduced in Chrome 45. While not yet activated for all, Schoen mentions that this will be turned on by default for all Chrome users “over the next few weeks”. (Interestingly, I am currently running Chrome 45 on my MacBook, but I’m not seeing an option in “Settings” to auto-pause Flash.)

Google Chrome, while my personal choice of browser, has earned its reputation as a memory hog and battery-life destroyer on laptops. While I was hopeful upon reading Schoen’s post, I’m personally not seeing any improvement — at this point — with version 45. Even this YouTube video showing Chrome 43 vs. the new 45 isn’t all that impressive in terms of the browser’s “new” memory-saving capabilities.

Anyone out there have any feedback on Google Chrome 45? Share your thoughts on the updated browser below.

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