Oh, the Chrome apps! There were really interesting ones, but for different reasons, including the advancement of web applications – on whose technologies Chrome apps were based – they ended up sentencing their existence. Which is not a bad thing per se, because the alternative is in the making and it is not an exclusive Google technology, but a web standard.
As we told you at the time, Chrome apps «were released in 2013 as a method to distribute complex web applications that do not need a constant Internet connection and that integrate well with the desktop, but practically everything they offer it is currently available just by opening a browser tab »… with exceptions, one might add, although that no longer matters.
The point is that web applications, and more specifically progressive web applications, which are the technology that takes over in modern web browsers, were not the last, but all the nails in the coffin of Chrome apps, to the dessert is not a necessary step, but it does stand out for its popularization. AND the calendar set by Google is being fulfilled. A calendar that pointed to:
- In March 2020 the Chrome Web Store will stop accepting new applications from developers, although those that are already available may continue to be updated until June 2022.
- In June 2020, support for applications on PC (Linux, Mac, Windows) will end, with the exception of Chrome Enterprise and Chrome Education users, whose support will continue until December of this year.
- In December 2020, the support of applications on PC (Linux, Mac, Windows) will be definitively ended.
- In June 2021 the support of certain APIs for developers will be withdrawn, which means the end of certain functions and, therefore, the end of certain applications; also the end of application support in Chrome OS.
- Finally, in June 2022 the support of applications will be completely ended on Chrome OS.
But there is a last minute change, and that is that Google will allow Chrome apps to continue working at least until 2025, only for Chrome OS Enterprise, the professional version of Google’s operating system based on Chrome and Linux used in Chromebook laptops that are distributed in the educational sector, mainly, thus maintaining active support for certain APIs.
However, Google is urging developers to migrate applications from Chrome to PWA “as soon as possible”, because the technology is mature and because this will avoid a disappointment in the medium term.