All about Google Chrome & Google Chrome OS

19 Apr 12 Chrome for Android gets desktop mode and download support

The Google Chrome for Android beta has just been updated, and at least one new feature will have power users rejoicing. Chrome now lets you switch between a website’s mobile and desktop versions, just as a proper mobile browser should.

Chrome also now allows you to drop shortcuts to your favorite websites directly onto your Android home screen for faster access. System-wide proxy settings are now supported as well, and you can also specify which Android apps you’d like to use to open specific files types when you click on a URL in Chrome. A handful of other improvements also made the cut, including support for right-to-left languages.

There’s still quite a way to go before Chrome for Android is ready to dump the beta tag, of course. Despite the arrival of desktop features like  tab synchronization, support for Flash remains MIA. While Adobe is no longer developing the mobile Flash plug-in, it’s possible that Google will deliver the newer Pepper version that ships with Chrome on other platforms to Android Devices. Chrome OS runs on ARM, too, so it’s still possible that Chrome for Android will one day receive Flash support.

The goal, of course, is to end up with a single browser to develop and maintain across all platforms — Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, Google TV, and Chrome OS.

If you’re interested in checking out the progress so far, fire up Google Play on your Android device and install the latest beta version. As long as you’ve got Ice Cream Sandwich on your phone or tablet, you’re good to go.

More at the Google Chrome Blog

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