Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Chrome Roars Out of Beta

By Anders Bylund - Updated Apr 5, 2017 at 8:02PM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

That was fast. Whatever happened to Google's endless test phases?

This Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) Chrome browser must be a much bigger deal than what I thought. Now it looks like Big G wants to make serious money off its little experiment.

Sure, you're used to Google being fast. The search engine sifts through billions of Web pages to return a handful of hopefully relevant links in a fraction of a second. True, competitors like Yahoo! (NASDAQ:YHOO) and Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) also crank out results in the blink of an eye, but they get far fewer search requests per second than the worldwide market leader. So speed is nothing new in Mountain View.

But when it comes to software and services, Google tends to take its sweet time. Gmail has been around since 2004, and open to the public for nearly two years now, but it's still officially a Beta release -- software still in testing before being considered production-worthy. The Picasa image organizer only recently lost its Beta tag after four years in limbo. According to Web-monitoring company Pingdom, 45% of the company's products are in beta at the moment.

Actually, that figure just dropped a tiny bit. The Chrome browser moved out of beta and into full production mode last night.

After 15 version updates in just three months, the browser is now ready to get supported like a real business application and bundled with computer systems. It's easy to imagine someone like Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) or Hewlett-Packard (NASDAQ:HPQ) shipping laptops with this lightweight and high-performance browser, if only to put some pressure on market leader Microsoft to improve its Internet Explorer. Taking the little "beta" label off a browser might not sound like a big move, but I think it does unlock a whole new world of sales opportunities.

Chrome has come a long way since branching off from the WebKit platform that also powers Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) Safari browser. And it's done so in a very short time, by Google standards. Now let's watch the bundling agreements roll in -- and then, the money.

Further fast-paced Foolishness:

Stock news, financial commentary, and your daily dose of Foolishness: Get plugged in to The Motley Fool on Twitter!

Microsoft and Dell are Motley Fool Inside Value recommendations. Google is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers selection, and Apple is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor pick. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund owns shares in Google, but he holds no other position in any of the companies discussed here. You can check out Anders' holdings or a concise bio if you like. The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

Alphabet Inc. Stock Quote
Alphabet Inc.
$119.70 (2.63%) $3.07
Microsoft Corporation Stock Quote
Microsoft Corporation
$289.16 (2.43%) $6.86
Apple Inc. Stock Quote
Apple Inc.
$169.24 (2.62%) $4.32
Dell Technologies Inc. Stock Quote
Dell Technologies Inc.

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
S&P 500 Returns

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 08/10/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.