UPDATED: Chrome comes out of beta stage

— 6:00 AM on December 11, 2008

Some Google products just never seem to make it out of beta—just ask Gmail users. With Chrome, however, Google doesn't seem interested in having another product stagnate in an officially incomplete state. TechCrunch says Google VP Marissa Mayer revealed in an interview that the browser "is coming out of beta."

Mayer apparently didn't mention a schedule. However, TechCrunch explains that PC vendors want to bundle the browser on their systems, but they can't offer it unless it's a proper, complete release, so Google may feel pressure to make the move quickly. Considering Chrome's performance, security features, and unique touches (like the ability to save web apps as desktop shortcuts), one can easily see why the likes of Dell or HP might be interested. Such a partnership could really bolster the browser's market share, too.

Google released the very first Chrome beta for Windows in early September. Chrome is based off the same WebKit rendering engine as Apple's Safari, but it uses a speedy, custom-built V8 JavaScript engine and includes some of Firefox's anti-phishing functionality. According to Net Applications figures, the browser's market share surged over the 1% mark within days of the launch, but it subsequently fell and only recently made it to 1% again.

Update: Well, that was quick. Google has announced on its blog that Chrome is no longer in beta as of today. The latest release is numbered

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