June 29, 2012
Chrome Crashes MacBook Air
Google has been busy this week releasing new products and informing their developers on new, upcoming products. So far, they’ve announced a new Nexus phone, Nexus tablet and Nexus music player-thing.
Yesterday, they announced some updates to their Chrome OS and Google Documents as well as bringing their Chrome browser and Google Drive to the iOS sphere.
A popular choice for many Apple fans, Chrome has become a go-to browser as they opt out of the native Safari. As such, Chrome for iOS has already reached the #1 spot for free iOS apps, not even 24 hours later, reports 9to5mac.com.
Though the app may be taking off in popularity on iDevices, it’s also causing some new MacBook Air (MBA) customers to shout profanities. Many 2012 MBA users have been reporting some crashing and kernel panicking lately, guessing that Chrome may be the culprit.
Google has taken time out of their busy schedules of announcements and product launches to acknowledge that there may be a problem with Chrome on new MacBooks. In a statement to Gizmodo, Google has said, “We have identified a leak of graphics resources in the Chrome browser related to the drawing of plugins on Mac OS X. Work is proceeding to find and fix the root cause of the leak.”
Ready for the geeky details? Buckle in, let’s ride.
“The resource leak is causing a kernel panic on Mac hardware containing the Intel HD 4000 graphics chip (e.g. the new Macbook Airs). Radar bug number 11762608 has been filed with Apple regarding the kernel panics, since it should not be possible for an application to trigger such behavior. While the root cause of the leak is being fixed, we are temporarily disabling some of Chrome’s GPU acceleration features on the affected hardware via an auto-updated release that went out this afternoon (Thursday, June 28). We anticipate further fixes in the coming days which will re-enable many or all of these features on this hardware.”
The two companies are said to be working together to fix this problem, with Google blaming the issue on a “bug” from Apple.
There’s a certain friction which exists between Apple and Google. Historians and romantics will recall the early days, when Eric Schmidt, former Google CEO, and current executive chairman sat on Apple’s board. It was a short relationship, however, lasting only 3 years. As it turns out, the FTC – as well as Steve Jobs – wasn’t too keen on Google’s entrance into mobile with Android and computing with Chrome OS. After Schmidt’s departure, Jobs did things like declare “thermonuclear war” against Android and threaten to sue Google for deploying multi-touch to their devices. Accounts were given about heated meetings wherein Jobs and Google execs would be yelling with one another – it got pretty ugly.
Now, the age-old Battle of the Browsers is beginning to rear its decapitated head once more as people have begun to debate which internet access tool is “best.” According to VentureBeat, Internet surfers are beginning to leave Chrome en masse for Apple’s native Safari. This sounds like a stretch, as the only people, so far, who are affected by this issue, are 2012 MacBook Air users. Regardless, I’ll continue to love and use Safari as my default.
Image Credit: Apple