Chrome is one of the most widely updated applications of Google. And given the massive number of its users which is over a billion, it does not come as a surprise, that we already have a newer version, within under a month.
The latest version of Chrome called Chome 48, was recently released by Google for Windows, Mac, and Linux. The announcement was made via a blog post by Krishna Govind of Google Chrome.
Chrome 48.0.2564.82 contains a number of fixes and improvements — a list of changes is available in the log. Watch out for upcoming Chrome and Chromium blog posts about new features and big efforts delivered in 48,”
One of the major features of this Chrome version is the removal of RC4 encryption which was a stream cipher, designed in 1987, that has been widely supported across browsers and online services for the purposes of encryption.
However, over the past few years, RC4 has been found with many vulnerabilities which made the websites using RC4 susceptible to the attacks. Due to this, Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) had prohibited the use of RC4 with TLS in February 2015.
Google, Microsoft, and Mozilla had decided to drop the RC4 support in their respective browsers this year, and Chrome is the first one to do that with Chrome 48.
Chrome 48 now also allows the websites to add custom buttons to push notifications so that users can perform various tasks from the notification bar itself.
The new version has also introduced VP9 to WebRTC, a video conferencing platform. VP9 is a video codec and is seen as Google’s open competitor to H.265. VP9 reportedly takes about half of the bandwidth (or storage) as VP8.
Apart from the above changes, the new update also includes 37 security fixes out of which, those contributed by the external researchers are highlighted by Google in its announcement post.
The users can update to Chrome 48 by using the browser’s built-in silent updater, or can also download it directly from google.com/chrome.