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Chrome Beta 87 updates its PDF viewer, introduces new security features and more (APK Download)



Chrome 86 was a pretty massive update with support for the Native File System API, various interface enhancements and new experiments to try. Just a week later, Chrome 87 has now entered the Beta Channel. There is a new PDF viewer, performance improvements for websites that use cookies, and much more.

New PDF viewer

Chrome’s PDF viewer has received minor improvements over the years, including annotation and shape editing, but Chrome 87 has more drastic changes in store. There is a new #pdf-viewer update flag that turns on an updated PDF-viewer with long-awaited features.

Left: Old sore; Right: New viewer

The updated viewer does not look too different from the old one at first glance, but there are a few important differences. There is now a sidebar that displays a list of pages so you can preview each page and navigate through them more easily. The existing chapter list, which was previously a drop-down menu, has been moved to the same section. If you do not need to see the list, you can hide it by clicking the new hamburger button in the upper left corner.

Two-sided mode in the new viewer

The PDF viewer can now also display two pages side by side with a new option in the overflow menu. The floating zoom and fit action buttons have also been moved to the top bar so they are visible at all times instead of jumping in and out as you move the mouse.

The new viewer should be enabled for everyone by default when Chrome 87 leaves beta, but Google’s plans may still change. As before, PDF view is not available on Chrome for Android or iOS, only on desktop platforms.

Cookie Store API

Cookies are no longer the only way websites can store data locally, but they are still one of the most popular methods. Believe it or not, there is no method provided by the browser to access and edit specific cookies by their name or value – websites have to analyze the list of cookies themselves, sometimes with ineffective methods that slow down code execution. Now, 26 years after the first browser with cookie support was released (Netscape 0.9), this is finally changing.

Chrome 87 includes a new Cookie Store API, which gives websites a clean JSON-formatted list of all stored cookies. Most importantly, the new API is asynchronous, so the browser does not have to stop all code execution while waiting for the data to be found. The Cookie Store also enables JavaScript Service Workers (such as Background Processes) to access cookies.

Other changes

As always, this update includes changes for both users and developers. Here are some minor changes included with Chrome 87:

  • Chrome drops support for the -webkit-font-size-delta CSS property, which is rarely used and never standardized across browsers.
  • A new flag forces servers hosted locally (127.0.0.1/localhost) or on an intranet to explicitly sign up for public Internet connections. Google hopes this will “reduce the risk of inadvertently exposing devices and servers to a client’s internal network throughout the web.”
  • A new add-on to the getUserMedia () API allows Chrome to pan and tilt a connected camera, ideal for conference calls and other applications.
  • The new Steam API provides “ubiquitous, interoperable primitives for creating, composing, and consuming data streams” and is enabled by default in Chrome 87.
  • The new WebXR Depth API makes it easier to calculate depth information for physics.
  • Cross-origin Isolation is now enabled by default, so websites can safely use advanced APIs if they choose new security restrictions.
  • New CSS Grid debugging capabilities and a Web Authentication API emulator are available in Developer Tools.

fetch

The APK is signed by Google and upgrades your existing app. The cryptographic signature guarantees that the file is safe to install and was not tampered with in any way. Instead of waiting for Google to push this download to your devices, which may take days, download and install it just like any other APK.

Chrome Beta
Chrome Beta

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