New Motorola phones first to get Chrome for Android browser
Google's new browser struggles to gain usage share
Computerworld - The first smartphones to rely on Google's Chrome browser for Android will be Motorola Mobility's just-announced Droid Razr M, Droid Razr Maxx and Droid Razr HD, the company said Wednesday.
The Droid Razr M, the only one of the trio that was pegged with a price and ship date yesterday, costs $99.99 and will hit Verizon stores next week. Customers can pre-order a Razr M now from Verizon's website.
Chrome will be bundled on all three models, replacing other browsers, including Google's aged stock Android application, that are usually pre-installed on Android smartphones.
The move shouldn't have been a surprise: Motorola Mobility is a subsidiary of Google, which acquired the handset maker in May.
Google launched Chrome for Android in February, saying then that the long-term plan was for "Chrome to become the standard browser on Android 4.0 and above."
Chrome shifted from beta to a so-called "stable" build -- analogous to a final production version -- on June 27, the same day Google unveiled its Nexus 7 tablet, which also includes the browser.
Chrome for Android is based on Chrome 18, putting it three versions behind the current stable build for Google's desktop browser.
Because Chrome for Android requires Android 4.0 and later -- in other words, the editions dubbed "Ice Cream Sandwich" and "Jelly Bean" -- it has made little headway on the usage charts. Together, Android 4.0 and 4.1 power about 22% of all Android devices.
According to Web analytics company Net Applications, Chrome for Android accounted for just 0.5% of all mobile browsers that went online in August.
Apple's Safari 5.1, with a 48.3% share, is the world's most-used mobile browser in Net Applications' tracking.
Irish measurement company StatCounter, a rival to Net Applications in browser usage ranking, does not publish data about individual editions of Android-based browsers.
Although Chrome for Android will be the default browser for the new Razr smartphones, owners of other Android devices running Ice Cream Sandwich or Jelly Bean can download the free browser from Google Play.
Gregg Keizer covers Microsoft, security issues, Apple, Web browsers and general technology breaking news for Computerworld. Follow Gregg on Twitter at @gkeizer, on Google+ or subscribe to Gregg's RSS feed . His email address is email@example.com.
Google's Android OS
- Malware-infected Android apps spike in the Google Play store
- Nokia plans forked Android smartphone for Barcelona unveiling
- LG G Flex deep-dive review: The curious case of the curved phone
- Xperia Z1S deep-dive review: A stylish phone with power and panache
- Low-end smartphone battle forces Nokia to Android
- Moto G real-world review: The best budget phone money can buy
- Google escalates offensive against Office with Android 'KitKat'
- Galaxy Note 3 deep-dive review: A plus-sized phone with perks and quirks
- LG G2 deep-dive review: Extraordinary hardware in an ordinary phone
- Android 4.4 to be officially called KitKat
Read more about Mobile Apps in Computerworld's Mobile Apps Topic Center.
- 15 Non-Certified IT Skills Growing in Demand
- How 19 Tech Titans Target Healthcare
- Twitter Suffering From Growing Pains (and Facebook Comparisons)
- Agile Comes to Data Integration
- Slideshow: 7 security mistakes people make with their mobile device
- iOS vs. Android: Which is more secure?
- 11 sure signs you've been hacked
- Performance Management: The Mobile App Development Playbook This comprehensive 16 page Forrester Research, Inc. report, authored by Jeffrey Hammond, Forrester VP and Principal Analyst, details a number of valuable, commonly...
- New Problems Require Innovative Solutions The mobile market is expected to be worth $25 billion by 2015
- Getting Agnostic about Mobile Devices The idea of being able to interact with customers, prospects, and stay attuned to competitive pressures is not new, but the velocity at...
- Mobile Policy Checklist Here's what to consider when putting together a mobile policy designed to support a highly productive workforce.
- Mobile Apps and Devices Slash Customer Cycle Time Consolidated Engineering Laboratories' field employees used to collect data on triplicate forms that were sometimes hard to read and difficult to manage. After...
- Cloud Knowledge Vault Learn how your organization can benefit from the scalability, flexibility, and performance that the cloud offers through the short videos and other resources... All Mobile Apps White Papers | Webcasts