Google has announced it has begun “the evolution away from the Chrome apps platform”, with plans to shut the entire initiative down by 2018.
Chrome apps were launched three years ago and presented games developers with an alternative way to create browser-based titles. However, advances in the web’s capabilities plus the ongoing development of Chrome have rendered these apps almost redundant.
In an official blog post, Google’s VP of product management Rahul Roy-Chowdhury claims that only one per cent of Windows, Mac and Linux users actively make use of Chrome’s packaged apps, and the browser’s hosted apps ”are already implemented as regular web apps”.
“We will be removing support for packaged and hosted apps from Chrone on Windows, Mac and Linux over the next two years,” Roy-Chowdhury wrote.
“Starting in late 2016, newly-published Chrome apps will only be available to users on Chrome OS. In the second half of 2017, the Chrome Web Store will no longer show Chrome apps on Windows, Mac and Linux, but will continue to surface extensions and themes.
“In early 2018, users on these platforms will no longer be able to load Chrome apps.”
Developers are encouraged to migrate their Chome apps to the web. They will be able to continue building apps for Chrome OS.