Google is announcing some changes to the way it handles extensions in its Chrome browser. Starting today, newly published extensions will only be available in the Chrome Web Store. For years, web developers have been able to trigger installations of Chrome extensions from their own websites, or inline installation as Google calls it, but Google is phasing this method out. We continue to receive large volumes of complaints from users about unwanted extensions causing their Chrome experience to change unexpectedly, explains James Wagner, Googles extensions platform product manager. The majority of these complaints are attributed to confusing or deceptive uses of inline installation on websites. While Google has attempted to address these misleading extensions, the Chrome Web Store displays a lot more information about extensions. Google says extensions installed from the Chrome Web Store directly are significantly less likely to be uninstalled compared to inline ones. Google is planning to remove inline installation from Chrome for existing extensions starting on September 12th, and Chrome users will be redirected to the Web Store. With Chrome 71 in early December, Google is also planning to remove the inline install API method entirely. Were confident this change will improve transparency for all users about their extension choices in Chrome, says Wagner. The changes mean that youll only be able to install Chrome extensions from the Web Store, and developers will need to update their install buttons to link to the Chrome Web Store page instead. These new changes should also prevent Chrome users from installing extensions they dont need or simply stop them from being misled into installing an extension.
People are apparently less likely to uninstall extensions from the Web Store itself. Google must have seen positive results when it blocked Windows users from installing Chrome extensions outside the Web Store, because that'll soon be the case for everyone. The tech giant will block inline Chrome extension installation on all platforms starting this summer. Google said the descriptions and feature lists in the Chrome Web Store are instrumental in helping people make informed decisions on whether or not they truly need a particular extension. It found that users are less likely to uninstall an add-on if it came from the official extension portal. Google has started enforcing the new rule by blocking inline installation for all extensions first published today, June 12th, 2018. The company will then disable the ability for existing extensions starting on September 12th. Even if users click on a link elsewhere on the internet, they'll still be redirected to the Chrome Web Store -- no more instant install from developers' or random websites. Finally, Google will completely kill the inline install API from Chrome 71 in early December 2018 to completely remove it from developers' options. "We're proud of the choices the Chrome Web Store provides users in enhancing their browsingexperience," Extensions Platform Product Manager James Wagner said in his announcement. "At the same time, it's crucial that users have robust information about extensions prior to installation, so that they fully understand how their browsing experience will be impacted. We're confident this change will improve transparency for all users about their extension choices in Chrome."