Chrome 95 logo

If you feel like the last Google Chrome release just happened, you’re not alone. Version 95 of the popular browser was released on October 19, 2021. This update includes improved security for payments, the ability to save Tab Groups, and more.

Improved Secure Payments

Chrome 95 authentication pop-up.
Github

Buying things online comes with a certain amount of risk, but Google is trying to improve that even more. Chrome 95 includes improved payment authentication.

The goal is to make the buying process more secure and straightforward. Third-parties—such as banks—can use a new payment extension to authenticate any requests during the checkout process.

Web Apps Can Be Default Apps

Chrome URL web handler.
Microsoft

In Chrome 95, web apps can register themselves as “URL handlers.” This means they can act more like native default apps. For example, clicking a link associated with a service can open the link in that service’s web app.

This functionality has been possible through other means for a little while, but now it’s integrated directly in Chrome. The result for you as a user is web apps feel even more like “real” native apps.

RELATED: How to Set Your Default Apps on Windows 11

Color Eyedropper Tool for Web Apps

Eydropper tool in Chrome.
Github

Chrome 95 on the desktop is getting a new EyeDropper API. An eyedropper tool allows you to select a color from an image. You may have seen this feature on some websites, but it can now be more easily implemented with the built-in API.

Save Tab Groups

Save tab groups in Chrome.

Tab Groups have slowly become a standard feature across desktop web browsers. Google continues to flesh out the feature with the ability to save Tab Groups in Chrome 95.

The feature is pretty self-explanatory. You can create a Tab Group like normal, but then instead of having to recreate it if you close it, you can simply “Save” the group. That makes it much easier to open again later.

The feature is currently behind a feature flag that can be found at chrome://flags/#tab-groups-save.

RELATED: Why You Should Use Tab Groups in Your Web Browser

What Else Is New?

Google now releases every version of Chrome every four weeks, which means the big glaring features aren’t as frequent. There’s still a lot happening under the surface, though. You can read about many of these changes on Google’s developer site as well as on the Chromium blog. We’ll highlight a few changes here:

  • In an attempt to reduce the entry points for web apps to access your file system, Chrome 95 takes steps to replace the old File System Access API with a new Storage Foundation API.
  • Google started removing FTP support in Chrome 88, but now Chrome is removing support for FTP URLs.
  • The Lighthouse panel is now running Lighthouse 8.4.
  • Searching for a file in the Command Menu has been made easier with a new UI.

How to Update Google Chrome

Chrome will automatically install the update on your device when it’s available. To immediately check for and install any available updates, click the three-dot menu icon, and then click Help > About Google Chrome.

RELATED: How to Update Google Chrome

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Joe Fedewa is a Staff Writer at How-To Geek. He has close to a decade of experience covering consumer technology and previously worked as a News Editor at XDA Developers. Joe loves all things technology and is also an avid DIYer at heart. He has written thousands of articles, hundreds of tutorials, and dozens of reviews.
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