Google this week released the latest stable version of its browser, Chrome 18, which adds a graphics boost and fixes some security issues identified by Pwn2Own contest hackers.
In a blog post, Google promised improvements to Canvas2D’s speed and WebGL’s reach.
“We’ve enabled GPU-accelerated Canvas2D on capable Windows and Mac computers, which should make Web applications like games perform even better than a pure software implementation,” wrote Google’s John Bauman and Brian Salomon.
GPU-accelerated Canvas2D was previously only available in the beta channel so developers had a chance to check it out, they said. “We’re continuing to make improvements and tweaks to our Canvas2D implementation, so please file a bug in our public issue tracker if you encounter problems.”
WebGL, meanwhile, brings hardware-accelerated 3D graphics to the browser and was first added to the stable version of Chrome in February 2011. With Chrome 18, Google has enabled SwiftShader, a software rasterizer from TransGaming that kicks in for users who cannot run content on the GPU.
“Keep in mind that a software-backed WebGL implementation is never going to perform as well as one running on a real GPU, but now more users will have access to basic 3D content on the web,” Bauman and Salomon wrote.
This week’s release also fixes nine security issues, three of which were designated as high priority. Google handed out $4,000 in bug bounties this time around, as well as an additional $8,000 for “awesomeness” to those who worked with Google to prevent certain glitches from reaching the stable channel.
In early March, Chrome was the first to fall in the Pwn2Own hacking competition. Google said this week that some of the security updates in Chrome 18 “represent the start of hardening measures based on study of the exploits submitted to the Pwnium competition.”
Chrome 17 was released in early February and added faster page loading and more download security.
For more, see PCMag’s full review of Google Chrome and the slideshow below.
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Article source: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2402402,00.asp