Chrome 78 launches with security updates and tab overlay feature
Google started to roll out a new version of Chrome Stable on Tuesday; Chrome 78 is available for all desktop versions of the web browser (Linux, Mac and Windows). Most Chrome installations should receive the update to the new version automatically thanks to the built-in automatic update functionality.
Users who don't want to wait until their browser receives the update automatically can select Menu > Help > About Google Chrome to force a manual check for updates.
The new stable version fixes 37 security fixes, some of them rated high, the second highest severity rating.
Google does not reveal much about new features when it comes to new Chrome Stable releases. While it does publish a very, very long list of changes, not complete but still, it is a thankless task going through the log as it lists mostly uninteresting internal changes.
The most prominent feature of Chrome 78 Stable is the new tab overlay feature that Google implemented in the browser. Google has been working on the feature behind the scenes for a long time and the first iteration of the new tab overlay feature is now available in the stable version.
Chrome users who hover over tabs in the browser see the full page title and domain of the loaded site in an overlay. Chrome displayed the page title only in previous versions. The display of the full page title is quite useful as it is usually not fully visible in the tab and sometimes not visible at all in Chrome.
Google Chrome has no options in the Settings to change the feature. Users who want to do so can change an experimental flag currently. The flag will go away eventually, however.
- Load chrome://flags/#tab-hover-cards in the browser's address bar.
- Set the flag to Disabled.
- Restart Chrome.
Google revealed plans last month to start testing DNS over HTTPS in Chrome 78. A quick test in Chrome 78 showed that the functionality was not turned on even while one of the DNS services that Google picked for the test was used on the device. It is possible that the feature is going to be rolled out gradually to eligible systems.
Update: Google revealed that it has been postponed to Chrome 79.
The Password checkup extension that Google released recently is also not integrated natively yet. It will warn Chrome users about leaked passwords when these are used in the browser to sing in to web services and sites.
The option to modify the New Tab Page theme was not available yet on the test system as well. As is the case with most features, it is possible that Google is rolling it out over time to monitor reception and potential issues.
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