Thursday, June 17, 2010

Native PDF rendering coming to Google Chrome

In line with getting the Chrome OS ready for shipment in the last quarter of this year, Google has been adding more features to Chrome, its base browser for the Chrome OS. Tonight on the Chromium blog, a new feature addition is the ability to render PDF files directly in the browser like any other webpage.
"PDF files will render as seamlessly as HTML web pages, and basic interactions will be no different than the same interactions with web pages (for example, zooming and searching will work as users expect)."
This and other developments on the Chrome browser makes me rethink my earlier views of what the Chrome OS is. More importantly, functions and features like this seem small, but added up, they become great factors in wooing people away from other browsers and winning Chrome more market share. Not to mention being a big threat to the now obese Firefox.

They warn however, that advanced PDF features will still require a separate launch of Adobe Reader.
"Currently, we do not support 100% of the advanced PDF features found in Adobe Reader, such as certain types of embedded media. However, for those users who rely on advanced features, we plan to give them the ability to launch Adobe Reader separately."
They are however working with the Adobe Reader team to get all those features to work natively in the browser via the "next generation browser plugin."

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