Google announced today that it will shorten the Chrome release schedule from every six weeks to every four weeks.
“For more than a decade, Chrome has shipped a new milestone every 6 weeks, delivering security, stability, speed and simplicity to our users and the web,” Google’s Alex Mineer writes. “As we have improved our testing and release processes for Chrome, and deployed bi-weekly security updates to improve our patch gap, it became clear that we could shorten our release cycle and deliver new features more quickly. Because of this, we are excited to announce that Chrome is planning to move to releasing a new milestone every 4 weeks, starting with Chrome 94 in Q3 of 2021.”
Google is also adding what it calls an Extended Stable option, which will provide milestone updates every 8 weeks. This will be available to enterprise administrators and Chromium embedders who need additional time to manage updates, Google says.
And this change will impact Chrome OS, as well, though Google is being a bit vague on the details.
“For users on Chrome OS, we also plan to support multiple stable release options,” Mineer says. “We’ll have more to share with Chrome OS administrators in the coming months about the choices you’ll have for milestone updates to your managed devices.”
Naturally, one wonders whether Microsoft will switch to a four-week release schedule for the Chromium-based Edge browser or stick with the current six-week schedule. No word yet on that.