Chrome browser now supports Apple's Retina display

Version 21 of the Google browser also has new APIs for improved video/audio communications and gaming

The latest release of Google's Chrome browser can render webpages with the resolution of Apple's Retina display, the company said on Tuesday, making good on a commitment it made several weeks ago.

This means that users of 15-inch MacBook Pro laptops with Retina displays will be able to view webpages at a 2880-by-1800 resolution with Chrome 21.

In mid-June, Google said in a blog post that the Chrome development team was "off to the races" in enhancing the browser so that it could take advantage of ultra high-resolution Retina screens.

Chrome 21, which runs on the Mac OS, Windows and Linux OSes for laptops and desktops, also features a new API (application programming interface) called getUserMedia that lets users give Web applications access to their computers' cameras and microphones without having to install a plug-in.

With this WebRTC API, applications can do things like take photos of users, as the experimental Sketchbots app in the Chrome Web Lab does. After it takes a picture of the user's face, Sketchbots turns it into a line drawing and ships it to a robot in the Science Museum of London.

"The robot then draws out your portrait in a patch of sand, which you can watch live on YouTube and visitors can watch in person at the museum," wrote Shijing Xian, a Google software engineer in the blog post.

Another new API in Chrome 21 is the Gamepad Javascript API, which gives application developers access to standard gamepad controllers connected to the computer.

The new version also fixes a variety of bugs and security vulnerabilities, including several rated "high," including one described as a buffer overflow in the WebP decoder and another labeled integer overflows in the PDF viewer.

Juan Carlos Perez covers enterprise communication/collaboration suites, operating systems, browsers and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Juan on Twitter at @JuanCPerezIDG.

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Juan Carlos Perez

IDG News Service
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