Less than a decade after Google first introduced Chrome Apps, the company will soon begin phasing out support for Chrome Apps. Google first announced this phasing out in 2016 but hasn't laid out any affirmative plans until now. Google has now announced the timeline, and it starts soon:
- March 2020: Chrome Web Store stops accepting new Chrome apps
- June 2020: End of support for Chrome Apps on Windows, Mac, and Linux, except for Chrome Enterprise and Chrome Education users
- December 2020: End of support for Chrome Apps on Windows, Mac, and Linux for all users
- June 2021: End of support for NaCl, PNaCl, and PPAPI APIs
- June 2021: End of support for Chrome Apps on Chrome OS, except for Chrome Enterprise and Chrome Education users
- June 2022: End of support for Chrome Apps on Chrome OS for all users
The end of Chrome Apps doesn't mean Google is displeased with its progress. Instead, the company suggests that this move comes because of its continued investments in browsers and the associated advances. In a blog post announcement, the company stated:
"The progress of modern browsers puts the Web in a good position to answer the vast majority of use cases - evident in the success of companies like Figma and our own products like Google Earth. We are confident that the Web can deliver first-class experiences on an open platform."
The end of Chrome Apps doesn't affect Chrome Extensions. The company assured developers that it will continue to support and invest in Chrome Extensions. Specifically, the company mentioned "Fostering a robust ecosystem of extensions is critical to Chrome's mission and we are committed to providing a useful extension platform for customizing the browsing experience for all users."
For more information, or to understand how to transition away from Chrome Apps, check out the Chrome Apps migration site.