An experimental feature could help reduce memory usage in Google Chrome

Google Chrome Stock Photo
PhotoMIX Ltd./Pexels

Google Chrome might be one of the most popular web browsers, but it also is known to take up a lot of your computer’s processing power. Well, that will soon change. As noted by Chrome Story, Google is working on an experimental feature for Chrome that sets out to reduce its overall memory usage.

Known as “Skip best effort tasks,” the feature is currently available for testing in the latest Canary beta version of Google Chrome. Essentially, this feature cuts out typical Chrome tasks such as writing user data to the disk, cleaning caches, reporting metrics and updating components until the browser is ready to be shut down. These tasks are usually running in the background of the web browser and, as usage time progresses, can cause an increase in overall memory usage.

It is not on by default in Chrome Canary and, as with most experimental elements, is hidden behind a flag. Once loaded by typing in chrome://flags/#disable-best-effort-tasks, the setting option for the new memory-reducing ability can be enabled or disabled at will.

This wouldn’t be the first time that Google has been considering ways to make the Chrome browser more efficient. Previous information spotted in the Chromium open-source project revealed that it was working on a “never-slow mode” which intends to increase the performance and load times on select web pages. That feature aims to increase the load time on websites which typically load large scripts and also cuts back on technical elements in web pages like images, stylesheets, scripts, fonts, and long script tasks.

It is still not clear if and when the new memory reducing feature will come to regular versions of Google Chrome. Over the past few months, Google has put a lot of development effort into the browser. Several notable incoming new elements for Google Chrome have been spotted recently, including a new ability to give users warnings for lookalike URLs. A second feature also promises to fight websites that take control of the back button and history. For those who have plenty of websites open on a daily basis, Google is also working on a tab grouping feature which will reduce overall clutter.

Social Media

Your Google+ public content will remain viewable on the web, if you want it to

Google's failed social network — Google+ — will soon be wiped from the internet, but there's a team of volunteers working right now to save its public content for the Internet Archive.

Nintendo Switch controllers will soon be compatible with Google Chrome

Nintendo Switch controllers will soon be supported by Google Chrome, according to a new commit spotted by 9to5Google. The code is likely related to Google's Project Stream game streaming service.

Tired of choosing between Windows and Mac? Check out these Chromebooks instead

We've compiled a list of the best Chromebooks -- laptops that combine great battery life, comfortable keyboards, and the performance it takes to run Google's lightweight Chrome OS. From Samsung to Acer, these are the Chromebooks that really…

Privacy-focused DuckDuckGo added to Chrome as a default search option

DuckDuckGo is now listed as a default search option on Google’s popular Chrome browser. The privacy-focused search engine was added this week as part of the browser's latest update.

Edit, sign, append, and save with six of the best PDF editors

Though there are plenty of PDF editors to be had online, finding a solution with the tools you need can be tough. Here are the best PDF editors for your editing needs, no matter your budget or operating system.

Old Nvidia graphics cards to get ray tracing support in upcoming driver

Nvidia's RTX ray tracing technology will no longer be limited to RTX graphics cards. An upcoming driver update will add support for low-end ray tracing to GTX 10-series and 16-series graphics cards.

Apple iMac gets more powerful with new Intel CPUs, Radeon Pro graphics

Apple on Tuesday, March 19 refreshed its iMac lineup with new models featuring slightly more powerful Intel processors and new AMD graphics cards. The new 27-inch 5K model comes with options for Intel's six-core or eight-core ninth-gen…

Nvidia’s new simulator brings virtual learning to autonomous vehicle developers

Nvidia introduced a simulator for testing autonomous vehicle technologies. Drive Constellation is a cloud-based platform technology vendors can use to validate systems efficiently, safely, and much faster than with vehicles on real roads.

Paper designs digitize in real time using an Illustrator-connected paper tablet

Love graphic design, but prefer the feel of real paper? The new Moleskine Paper Tablet - Creative Cloud Connected syncs with Adobe Illustrator in real time, turning paper sketches into digital drawings.

Make the most of your toner with our five favorite color laser printers

Color laser printers have improved dramatically over the years, and today's models offer both blazing print speeds and great image quality. Here are our favorite color laser printers, from massive all-in-ones to smaller budget options.

Firefox 66 is here and it will soon block irritating autoplay videos

Do web advertisements have you frustrated? Mozilla is here to help. The latest version of the browser will soon block autoplaying videos by default and will also help make web page scrolling smoother.

USB4 will be the fastest and most uniform USB standard yet

USB4 is on the horizon and alongside a massive boost in speed it's also unifying with the Thunderbolt 3 standard to help finally create a singular wired connection protocol that all devices can enjoy.

The U.S. government plans to drop $500M on a ridiculously powerful supercomputer

The U.S. Department of Energy has announced plans to build a $500 million exascale supercomputer by 2021. The project, known as the Aurora supercomputer, is expected to boost research efforts in fields such as public health.
Buying Guides

Apple has powered up its iMac lineup, but which one should you opt for?

With new processors and graphics cards for both the 4K and 5K models, the iMac feels like a good option for creatives again. But which should you buy? Here's our guide to choosing the right Apple all-in-one for your needs.