Google works fast when it comes to putting out new features in Chrome. The dev channel release of the browser just recently added in rudimentary support for Windows 8 and its Metro interface. Their next target is the new retina display in the MacBook Pro.
Google showed off their first effort in updating Chrome for the new MacBook Pro’s retina display. Here’s a comparison image of what is presumably how Chrome looks on both a regular MacBook Pro and the new retina display-powered MacBook Pro. The difference is pretty striking as you can obviously see.
The new high resolution version of Google Chrome is only available in the Canary Release for now. While those with new MacBook Pros are more than welcome to download it right now, I would suggest that you wait until it hits the beta channel. For those unaware, Canary is the highly experimental version of Chrome that’s updated every night. It’s extremely buggy and might not be user friendly. If you’re a developer, however, have at it and enjoy the high resolution fun.
Google Chrome is just the latest application among many that are being updated to take advantage of the new high resolution retina display in the MacBook Pro. It was announced during Apple’s WWDC keynote on Monday that retina display support would be hitting many Apple applications like Mail, Safari, Aperture and Final Cut Pro.
Beyond Apple’s own products, third-party software developers are also updating their products to take advantage of the new display. Photoshop and AutoCAD have both been updated by Adobe and AutoDesk respectively to take advantage of the new display.
Games can take advantage of the new retina display as well. Diablo III was mentioned at the keynote as being able to take advantage of the new 2880×1800 resolution and AnandTech confirms it. The author found that Diablo III was able to average at about 20 fps at max resolution. It’s playable, but it’s not exactly great either. The on-board Nvidia GT 650M can only do so much. Portal 2 was also able to display at 2880×1800, but the console text was way too small to even see so Valve probably needs to issue an update for it in the future.
As you can see, Chrome is in good company as more and more developers will start to optimize their apps for the new retina display. While I hate that the new MacBook Pro is blatantly anti-consumer from a hardware perspective, I appreciate that it’s driving more people to implement HD displays in their laptops. I think we’ve had enough laptops that can only display in 1366×768.