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Chrome 38 beta for Mac makes jump to 64-bit code

updated 11:35 am EDT, Fri August 29, 2014

Google promises 'number of speed and security improvements'

For Mac users, the latest beta channel release of Chrome -- Chrome 38 -- makes the switch to a 64-bit codebase, Google has announced. The primary benefit is said to be speed, since it grants access to "a superior instruction set, more registers, and a more efficient function calling convention," according to Google. The company points out that in some cases Chrome can be the only 32-bit app that's running, forcing OS X to load 32-bit system libraries that consume extra memory and launch time.

Chrome for Mac is in fact dropping support for 32-bit NPAPI plugins, though 64-bit versions will be supported until NPAPI is stripped from Chrome entirely later this year. Google hints that Chrome 37 may be the last or next-to-last edition of the browser capable of running on first-generation Intel Macs.

The Windows beta channel is already on a 64-bit codebase. That could mean that the final release of Chrome 38 will adopt the technology as well.

by MacNN Staff



  1. DiabloConQueso

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 06-11-08

    In "some" cases?

    Dropbox, Divvy, MySQL Workbench, Suitecase Fusion 5, BBEdit, virtually the entire Microsoft Office suite, Skype, FileMaker Pro, and yes, Apple's own built-in Dashboard are all 32-bit apps... just to name a few.

    Since Dashboard is active by default, I think there's hardly *ever* a case where Chrome is the only 32-bit app running. That statement by Google is nothing but a stretch of the imagination.

  1. Charles Martin

    MacNN Editor

    Joined: 08-04-01

    Hold on, are you saying Google sometimes lies to manipulate people to follow the path they want them too like a mouse in a maze towards cheese? I AM SHOCKED.

  1. Jeronimo2000

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 08-20-01

    64-bit, in a web browser? Wow, the difference will be earth-shattering.

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