Google is launching an open source web browser to compete with Internet Explorer and Firefox. The company is releasing a beta version of Google Chrome for Windows today (2 September).
Announcing the launch on Google blog, Sundar Pichai, Google vice-president for product management, says Chrome is designed to be lightweight, fast and able to cope with web applications that rely on graphics and multimedia.
He says: “We believe we can add value for users and, at the same time, help drive innovation on the web. Chrome is not just a browser but also a modern platform for web pages and applications.”
The new browser will help Google users make better use of its existing web applications such as Picasa and Maps.
The beta version will be available to users across 100 countries, with Mac and Linux versions currently being worked on.
Chrome faces stiff competition in the internet browser market. Microsoft’s Internet Explorer program dominates the sector, with 80% of the market.