Manifest V3 is how you’re meant to build Chrome extensions, and Google today laid out a more detailed transition timeline away from Manifest V2.

Manifest V3 has been criticized for impacting ad blockers, but Google has said it’s prioritizing privacy with this extension design. Last year, the company said Manifest V2 extensions would be phased out in 2023.

Ahead of that, Google is detailing the “gradual and experimental approach to turning off Manifest V2 to ensure a smooth end-user experience during the phase-out process.”

The transition starts in January of 2023 with version 112 when Chrome “may run experiments to turn off support for Manifest V2 extensions in Canary, Dev, and Beta channels.” At that time, Manifest V3 will be required to get a Featured badge in the Chrome Web Store.

By Chrome 115 in June, the experiments will extend to the Stable channel, while the Web Store will switch all existing Manifest V2 extensions with Public visibility to Unlisted. Similarly, no V2 items with Public visibility can be published.

This is meant to provide enterprise domains more time, but that exemption will be gone in January of 2024, and all old Manifest V2 extensions will be removed from the store. 

Google’s guidance to developers is to migrate to Manifest V3 “well ahead of the release of these Chrome versions because those extensions may stop working at any time following the aforementioned dates.”

In addition, we have been working with extension developers to improve Manifest V3 and to incorporate feedback from our community. Based on developer feedback, in recent months we’ve supplemented service worker functionality, introduced new APIs, and made a number of other platform improvements. 

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Abner Li

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