Installing a new Chrome extension from the official Chrome Web Store was a simply task up until now. All you had to do was click on the "free" icon on the store page and confirm the dialog that was displayed.
The experience is slightly more difficult when it comes to apps, as you need to be signed in to your Google account before you can install those in the web browser.
The dialog displays all permissions that the extension requires, such as "access your data on all websites", "read and modify your bookmarks", or "access your tabs and browsing activity".
As is the case with these kinds of dialogs, it is likely that many users simply clicked on the "Yes, I trust this extension!" link to continue with the installation.
That is going to change however. If you are running a recent version of Chrome Dev or Canary, you may have noticed that the confirmation dialog that is displayed to you during extension installations is slightly different.
Instead of just displaying the permissions to you that the extension requires to operate, you are now presented with check boxes that you need to tick before you can continue.
What this means is that you need to check one or multiple boxes before you can even add the extension to Chrome. The main idea behind the feature -- likely -- is the attempt to raise awareness for the permissions that an extension requires.
The permissions have not changed though, which makes it as difficult as before for most users to know whether an extension requires that permission, or if it does not but requests it anyway. Links to explanations would be really helpful, or at least screen overlays that appear on mouse over that explain the permission in plain terms.
It is not clear how successful this will be though. It is theoretically still possible to simply tick all boxes and click on the add button afterwards to install the extension.
It is however likely that additional users will notice the new extension installation dialog because of the change, which may raise their awareness in regards to the permissions the extension they want to install requests.
Google has not made an announcement yet in regards to the change. It is unclear at this point in time if the company plans to move the change to Chrome Beta and Stable channels as well, so that the majority of Chrome users will be subject to them, or if this is merely an experiment to test the waters.Advertisement
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.