Chrome: say goodbye to hosted packaged apps and hello to native Chrome Apps

Google has been working hard to make Chrome useful and efficient in our everyday lives. Part of this efficiency also comes from the developers who are responsible for designing applications and extensions for us, as well. A while ago, Google announced packaged apps for Chrome, which was designed to “fill a missing link between extensions and hosted apps”. Google worked hard to bring the developers what they needed to get their ideas and content out to the masses.

Google then announced Chrome Apps in 2013, which would allow for way more functionality and efficiency in the way consumers used Chrome. After this shift towards Chrome Apps, Google has now made it clear that they are getting rid of the old way of doing things. Google has just announced that they are killing off legacy packaged apps. What this means is that legacy packaged apps are no longer able to be published to the Chrome Web Store. In December of this year, the legacy packaged apps that are on the Chrome Web Store will be pulled, but users who already have them installed can still use them. However, starting next June, Chrome will stop supporting those legacy packaged apps.

In case you’re not quite sure how Chrome Apps are different from packaged apps, here’s what the Google Chrome blog said last year when Chrome Apps were first launched:

Here’s what you can expect with new Chrome Apps:

  • Work offline: Keep working or playing, even when you don’t have an internet connection.
  • More app, less Chrome: No tabs, buttons or text boxes mean you can get into the app without being distracted by the rest of the web.
  • Connect to the cloud: Access and save the documents, photos and videos on your hard drive as well as on Google Drive and other web services.
  • Stay up-to-speed: With desktop notifications, you can get reminders, updates and even take action, right from the notification center.
  • Play nice with your connected devices: Interact with your USB, Bluetooth and other devices connected to your desktop, including digital cameras.
  • Keep updated automatically: Apps update silently, so you always get all the latest features and security fixes (unless permissions change).
  • Pick up where you left off: Chrome syncs your apps to any desktop device you sign in to, so you can keep working.
  • Sleep easier: Chrome apps take advantage of Chrome’s built-in security features such asSandboxing. They also auto-update to make sure you have all the latest security fixes. No extra software (or worrying) required.
  • Launch apps directly from your desktop: To make it quicker and easier to get to your favorite apps, we’re also introducing the Chrome App Launcher for Windows, which will appear when you install your first new Chrome App. It lives in your taskbar and launches your apps into their own windows, outside of Chrome, just like your desktop apps. Have lots of apps? Navigate to your favorite apps using the search box.

For those of you who need to migrate over to the new way of doing things, don’t worry. The Chrome team has provided users with a migration manual on switching things over. Check it out here.

Source: TalkAndroid, Chromium blog

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