Google is punctual when it comes to keeping Chrome updated. This trend is felt more often in the Android version of the app. And last year, Google rolled out an update for the same, called Back-forward cache. This one aimed at improving load times while using the back and forward buttons. The feature seems worthy since it made its way to the desktop version of the app. Back-forward caching keeps a webpage in memory when you go back, which will reduce the load times if you return to the webpage soon. So let’s have a look at what’s the benefit of having the Back-forward cache in Chrome Desktop.
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The feature can be traced back to Chrome 86, released in October 2020 for the desktop version of Chrome. Google added a feature flag to manually enable the feature. It remained in the dark until Google announced they’re planning to test it through a beta version of Chrome.
Who can test it?!
The developers have said that they’ll be testing the feature with a small number of desktop Chrome users. Developers have said that they’re doing this to reduce any compatibility risk.
To reduce compatibility risk, we will start with a cautious approach of not caching pages when faced with uncertainty (for example, when a page is using a non-trivial API like WebSocket).
When will it be out?!
The feature took a long time to be finally listed as a beta feature for the desktop version of Chrome. We expect that could be some logical reasons behind this. There is no denying that Google Chrome is terrible in memory management for the PC segment. And this might likely be the reason for this delay. And this is an update that clearly impacts the memory usage of the app. Google is well aware of its image in memory management.
Our sources confirm that Google and Microsoft are working hard to reduce the memory usage in the Chromium engine. So we expect this one to not have that much of an impact on memory usage.
As for the update, Google will begin testing with Chrome 92. Chrome 92 is expected to be released as a beta on 3rd June and stable on 20th July.
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So many of us will have to patiently wait until we get a stable release. Only then we can say for sure whether this was a good move by Google. Yeah, you know, the desktop version of Chrome is already struggling a lot to keep up with your typing speed. And we expect Google won’t make it any worse.