With the latest stable version rolled out to Mac, Windows, Linux, and Android, Chrome 71 is now in the beta channel. At the moment, this release is more focussed on introducing a slew of new features that developers can take advantage of than user-facing ones.

Relative time formats — like “yesterday”, “42 seconds ago”, or “in 3 months” — are often used over absolutes in modern web apps. Several libraries today provide localized versions of such phrases for developers. However, this requires lists of customary words and phrases to be downloaded for each supported language, thus increasing a library’s bundle size and install time. Chrome 71 introduces the Intl.RelativeTimeFormat API that has the JavaScript engine handle this functionality.

Autoplay policies aimed at reducing annoying videos with sound from automatically playing will now be applied to the Web Audio API in Chrome 71. This follows several delays to reduce the impact to web games and applications.

Android

Developers can now customize how web apps appear in fullscreen with options like retaining the nav bar, or completely hiding controls for an immersive mode.

Some developers may prefer that the navigation bar be visible when entering fullscreen mode as it can be difficult for users to determine how to exit fullscreen mode. Some browsers such as Samsung also make this the default.

Chrome OS

Chrome OS 70 has yet to roll out, but the next version is planning several features for the Linux support that allows more advanced programming and development. The Linux virtual machine will now appear in the Chrome OS Task Manager, though not on a Linux app-by-app basis.

Meanwhile, the VM can now be shut down by right-clicking on the Terminal app icon. The new “Shut Down Linux (Beta)” option is faster than restarting your device. Additionally, folder sharing will allow Linux app to access read/write files.

Chrome 71 will hit the stable channel in early December.


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