'Year Of The Rabbit' Begins As Chrome 10 Hops Into Beta With 'Crankshaft' JavaScript

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As they have made abundantly clear over the past several months, Google hates talking about the version numbers of Chrome.

Well, except when they have something to talk about. Which is actually quite often.

Today brings another post highlighting some new features in Chrome 10, which has just hit the beta channel of the browser.

In the spirit of the lunar new year, we’re excited to kick off the Year of the Rabbit with a slew of enhancements in the Chrome beta channel,” Google writes. You can find a whole list of new features and improvements for Chrome 10 beta here, including password sync, GPU-accelerated video, and the new settings tab. But the key to Chrome 10, once again, is speed.

Specifically, JavaScript speed. Chrome 10 uses the latest version of their V8 engine, which they’re calling “Crankshaft”. Google previewed this on stage at the Chrome OS/Web Store event back in December and it was being tested in both Chromium (the open source browser on which Chrome is based) and the developer builds of Chrome. But now it’s apparently ready to primetime as Google is touting it in not one, but two posts.

Writes Google:

Chrome’s JavaScript engine V8 runs compute-intensive JavaScript applications even more quickly than before. In fact, this beta release sports a whopping 66% improvement on the V8 benchmark suite over our current stable release.

The benchmark chart below comparing this version of the JavaScript engine to the previous versions is pretty staggering.

You can find the beta version of Chrome here. Obviously, Google doesn’t consider it tested enough to be fully stable yet. But I’m typing this post on it. It seems pretty solid — and yes, fast.

[photo: flickr/robobobobo]

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