Google has today announced that it will now roll out software updates for its Chrome browser more frequently in order to seed new features at a quicker pace. The goal is to keep the experience of using Chrome dynamic and evolving for users, while also boosting the security aspect. The company will now release new Chrome updates every four weeks, starting with Chrome v94 that will be out in the third quarter of 2021.
For over a decade, Google claims to have followed a 6-week cycle for rolling out milestone updates. As far as security updates go, Google releases a new build every two weeks, which is also what inspired Google to shorten the patch gap and move to a 4-week milestone update cycle to deliver new features at a faster pace.
However, a quicker update cycle means a specific set of users may be forced to adapt to new changes more frequently, which might be cumbersome in certain scenarios. And to address that, Google also has a new Extended Stable channel that will deliver milestone updates after a span of 8 weeks, instead of the new 4-week cycle. The Extended Stable update cycle can be used by enterprise admins and Chromium embedders who will require more time to manage their updates.
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“Security updates on Extended Stable will be released every two weeks to fix important issues, but those updates won’t contain new features or all security fixes that the 4 week option will receive,” the company added in its blog post. And for Chrome OS users as well, Google plans to offer multiple update release options to better suit their needs, especially for enterprise customers.
Google has already updated its release schedule database for Chrome updates, and it now shows a gap of four weeks between each milestone build starting with Chrome v94 that is set to release on September 14 via the stable channel.