Chrome 94 beta gets next-gen gaming features as Google looks to make in-browser cloud gaming faster, smoother

Chrome 94 beta gets next-gen gaming features as Google looks to make in-browser cloud gaming faster, smoother
Representational image.Unsplash
  • Google is working on a new update for the Chrome browser that improves its gaming performance.
  • The new features are being tested in Chrome 94 beta, and should make their way to the stable version in the coming months.
  • These new updates make cloud gaming faster and smoother than before.
Google has rolled out the Chrome 94 beta update that makes the browser friendlier than ever before to in-browser gaming. The search giant says the new update should make gaming faster and easier, thanks to some tweaks in the Chrome browser’s code.

A faster and smoother gaming experience in the Chrome browser could potentially benefit cloud gaming services like Google Stadia and Facebook Gaming – after all, Chrome is the most widely used browser in the world, with a market share of 65%, according to Statcounter.

The Chrome 94 beta update includes tweaked WebCodecs, which is an application programming interface (API) that allows developers to access the video encoding/decoding codecs already bundled with the browser. The tweaked WebCodecs API can leverage the hardware power of your computer to bring you the game’s video stream faster.

Apart from this, the new beta update also includes tweaks to WebGPU API, allowing developers to talk to your computer’s graphics card directly, eliminating some of the layers in between to reduce latency.

Essentially, this could empower developers to make more graphics intensive games that can be played in the browser.


Looking beyond gaming

While in-browser gaming sounds interesting, it is yet to take off, and developers can leverage these tweaked APIs for more than just games.

According to Google, video conferencing giant Zoom has expressed its interest in using WebCodecs for video calling.

All of these changes are open source and are a part of the Chromium project, so other browsers based on Chromium will also be able to leverage Google’s advancements. For instance, Microsoft’s Edge browser is now based on Chromium, so these updates should trickle down to Edge as well in due course.


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