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Google gets cosy with Adobe, brings built-in PDF support to Chrome browser

by Parm Mann on 22 June 2010, 11:39

Tags: Chrome, Google (NASDAQ:GOOG)

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Google recently announced its plans to introduce an integrated PDF viewing experience to its Chrome web browser.

Following on from an earlier decision to integrate the Adobe Flash Player, Google hopes the addition of PDF support will allow users to enjoy a seamless web experience without the need for third-party software or plug-ins.

Using the new functionality - currently available only via a pre-final developer release - users will be able to render PDF files "as seamlessly as HTML web pages" from within the Chrome browser, says Google

Although PDF plug-ins themselves aren't entirely new, Google claims its own implementation will provide better compatibility, performance and security.

Built on the Netscape Plugin Application Programming Interface (NPAPI), Google's PDF viewer will be contained in the same browser sandbox as web pages; ensuring crashes caused by bad PDF files or known exploits impact only the open tab.

In addition to mitigating the threat of high-level security risks, the Chrome browser will also deliver the latest version of Chrome's PDF support to users automatically..

Despite the early promise, however, Google warns that its integrated PDF reader does not yet support all of the advanced features found in Adobe Reader, and adds that rendering quality is "a work in progress".

Chrome's native PDF functionality will eventually be made available via a wider beta release, prior to a final stable release.

HEXUS Forums :: 5 Comments

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Well, at least it's not actually using the Adobe PDF viewer, so it'll probably be more secure :mrgreen:
…and faster, and smaller, and more reliable, and need updating less often….
About time tbh!
PDFs are the thing I hate most about the internet.

If they can integrate it well, and make them load quickly and smoothly, it would be a big plus for Chrome.
So long as it can be disabled, I care not.