Google Chrome to end support for Android Nougat

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HIGHLIGHTS

  • Google has announced that Chrome 120 will not support Android Nougat.
  • Chrome is the world’s most popular web browser today including on desktop and mobile devices with billions of active users worldwide.
  • While Chrome 120 will not ship to Android Nougat, newer operating systems will continue to receive updates.

Google Chrome is the most popular and widely used web browser in the world, both on desktops and Android devices, with new releases happening every four weeks. Recently, Chrome also got a Material You revamp in September on its 15th birthday. While new improvements are always welcome, the company also discontinues support for older operating systems to better support its browser. In its recent announcement, Google announced that it will end support for Android Nougat and Chrome 119 will be the last version to support the operating system. This means that users on Android 7.0 and 7.1 will no longer receive any updates including security updates, leaving a chunk of Android users exposed to new security threats.

Chrome 120 will not ship to Android Nougat

  • Google in its Chrome Enterprise and Education Help release notesblog notes that it is ending support for Android Nougat. “The last version of Chrome that supports Android Nougat is Chrome 119,” the company writes.
  • Google Chrome 120, set to release on December 6th, 2023, will not ship to users running Android 7.0 and 7.1.
  • Chrome 119 will include a notification for Android Nougat users, suggesting users upgrade to newer Android versions.
  • According to recent Android version distribution data, Android Nougat, which was released in 2016, runs on nearly 2.6 percent of the total Android devices today, while the recent Android 13 version holds a market share of 22.4 percent.
  • Google usually discontinues support for older operating systems to keep the browser stable and more secure.

New features arriving in Chrome 120

Users operating on more recent operating systems can anticipate a variety of new features and improvements with the arrival of Chrome 120, including support for a transparent navigation bar on Android for an improved browsing experience (via Android Police). Elsewhere, Chrome is expected to include these features with the release of Chrome 120:

  • Default search engine choice:Chrome will offer users a choice to choose their default search engine. The feature is expected to roll out gradually to all users and is set to be widely available to everyone with Chrome 122 release.
  • Revamped safety check on Desktop:Google will proactively begin inspecting Chrome for safety-related issues to enhance user protection.
  • Third-party cookie depreciation:Chrome will start disabling third-party cookies globally starting with Chrome 120. As usual, this rollout is expected to happen gradually.
  • Package tracking for iOS:Chrome on iOS devices will introduce a new package tracking feature to enable users to track packages with their “estimated delivery dates and package status appearing in a new card on the New tab page”.
  • Network services will be sandboxed on Windows:To better protect its users on Windows devices, Chrome will sandbox the network services already running in its own process.
  • Resume the last tab from other devices (iOS):When signed in, Chrome will display a banner notification on your current device to let users easily resume the last active tab from any of your devices.

 

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