Learning While Aging

Google Chrome removes NPAPI support

It’s been two years since Google Chrome announced in September 2013 their plan to remove NPAPI support and according to their plan, the NPAPI support will be officially removed from Google Chrome including the current temporary override, and no NPAPI will be loaded.

Many Chrome users have been complaining about the removal since the announcement because currently many plugins are built with NPAPI and the impact of removing NPAPI support would be big, but it didn’t change the decision made by Google Chrome. The major use of NPAPI is to build plugins for gaming and streaming purposes, so it means that after the removal of NPAPI support, users would not be able to use Google Chrome browser to play games or watch videos on those web sites who use NPAPI plugins.

Why Google decided to make such bold step with the risk of losing many Chrome users? The simple answer is that NPAPI is an old technology and is not secure. Its existence slows down the adoption of newer and better web technology, such as HTML5 and WebRTC. Remember several years ago when Google decided to remove the support Adobe Flash player on YouTube web site to push the adoption of HTML5 technology?

Amazon has already responded to the upcoming change by changing their Amazon Instant Video service from using Silver Light plugin to using HTML5, so users don’t need to install any plugin to watch videos. However, Oracle is not very happy with this change because it means any web sites using Java plugin will stop working after the change, so they advise users to switch a different web browser:

JavaNPAPI_Notice

I personally like what Google is doing so new web technology can be adopted quickly, what do you think?

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