Google rolling out first Chrome for iOS update since November

Unlike other first-party apps, Google’s browser has historically followed a strict, publicized six-week release cycle. After going without updates for the past four months, a new version of Chrome for iPhone and iPad is rolling out now.

In February, Google started releasing new app updates on iOS again and the cadence resumed in earnest last month. Chrome, however, has been a bit behind and skipped version 88 (January) and 89 (March) entirely.

Today’s update is still Chrome 87.0.4280.163 and primarily focuses on bug fixes, though no major issues have emerged since the last release in November. Version 90 of the browser for all platforms is due next week, and Chrome will catch up with new features then. For example, Google has been testing Touch/Face ID to protect open Incognito tabs.

Some tweaks were made to the App Privacy label that Chrome added in recent weeks. Under the “Data Linked to You” section, “App Functionality” now includes your “Name.” This is due to how Google Pay in Chrome requires that detail to complete a transaction. Meanwhile, “Crash Data” and “Customer Support” is moving under the “Not linked to You” section.

As evidenced by those changes, Google says it will “regularly assess our data needs to ensure that we’re only collecting data that is necessary to provide and develop useful products and features,” while reminding that App Privacy labels “represent the maximum categories of data that could be collected.” Actual data collection depends on what features, like Chrome Sync for password management and bookmarks, are enabled by end users.

This Chrome update is rolling out now to iPhone and iPad users via the App Store.

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