Google is bringing Google Earth to more browsers this week. Google Earth has so far only worked on Google’s Chrome browser, limiting users of other browsers like Microsoft Edge, Firefox, etc.
The limitation was imposed by some technical decisions made by Google in terms of how the Google Earth platform is built. Google Earth is actually written in C++, using Chrome’s Native Client (NaCI) which is only available on Chrome.
That prevented Google from easily enabling support for Earth on other browsers, due to the lack of the Native Client. That is finally changing now, though, as Google is making the move to WebAssembly–the standard for bringing native code to the web–enabling support for other browsers like Edge, Firefox, and Opera.
Google has been testing support for non-Chrome browsers for six months as part of a public beta, and it’s now available for everyone.
Google says the company still has some work to do, and it plans to enable support for Safari in the future, as well as improving the experience across all these new browsers.