Honestly, I'm all in for PWAs in favour of Chrome Apps. To the final user, a PWA will work the same: an icon and a chrome-less window. However, they are built on top of open standards, so any browser can support PWAs and provide the same experience to their users, unlike Chrome apps, which only were supposed to work in Chrome. I hope that in the transition, we see more and more progressive web applications.
PWAs have replaced a few native apps on my phone and I couldn't be happier about it. I can use Twitter, Telegram, YouTube and even read HN (via the Premii webapp ) through a fullscreen interface that behaves like a native application (no address bar, tinted notifications bar, push notifications for Twitter and Telegram), but that nonetheless is still a browser.
Support for PWAs on Firefox for Android is around the corner. I'm a Firefox Nightly user and the support is there: websites that have a webapp manifest display an icon on the address bar to let you quickly "install" the application as an icon to the homescreen. It is supposed to reach stable channel on Firefox 58 .
It seems like I'm the only one who is happy about this. What's the point of restricting apps built using open web standards to one proprietary browser and app store? Agreed that there was a gap in offline support which Chrome filled at the time, but now it's time to move on and use newer and more widely supported APIs.
As a chrome app dev (Videostream is our app) the transition has been really annoying. They've given us ample time to prepare for the shutdown and we've developed a new app, from scratch, to work outside of the Chrome app world but they (as engineers tend to do) did nothing to mitigate the disaster of a transition. Through blogs, tweets, etc. directly pointing to the webstore, we have years of SEO built up all pointing directly to what will now be a dead link.
We've been pestering Google for a way to have a redirect or link on that page that says "get the app for windows and mac in its new home over here" but they haven't been very responsive. It's such a shitty way to treat developers who chose your ecosystem and who you did a certain amount of convincing. They have done this to us once before, with their wallet for digital goods, where they shut that down and developers lost any recurring subscriptions they had on the platform.
Basically, google is brutal if you develop on a platform for them that they decide to axe, they really don't think of the people and companies and how they will be affected and we now think twice before choosing to use anything they maintain.
Hopefully this convinced the last person still gullible enough to believe on Google's interest to maintain long term (let's say, more than a decade) any service that's not Search, Ads, YouTube, Gmail or Android.
I wouldn't build much on GAE either...
This is really going to hurt Windows users who do not want to use .exe or Windows 10 apps, which are both very heavy and less secure when it comes to https or remote content loading compared to Chrome Apps (Windows UWP in this case).
Disclaimer: It's interesting to see that our app (Polarr) is in the screenshot (link: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/polarr-photo-edito...)
Although ChromeOS is the smallest platform we currently support, we spent a lot of energy on it and it is so far, still the highest rated photo chrome app.
To put things in perspective. Between September to December, our Chrome App user breakdown are
Windows: 48.05% ChromeOS: 43.38% macOS: 7.11% Amount of users who used the app during this time frame: 326,459 (28.92% new).
Between Jun and September, our user breakdown are
Windows: 56.34% ChromeOS: 34.84% macOS: 7.25% Amount of users who used the app during this time frame: 280,013 (28.52% new).
This PWA Chrome apps is something I see as ultimate goal for all Electron apps: Have a one point JVM like instance, share resources across all Electron apps. So now many major Chrome Apps go Electron and I have 4-5 big Electron Chrome instances running... what a step backward on my 8GB RAM Mac!
Personal side note: I will miss Postmann Interceptor because I can catch cookies from a web login with the pwa app without any copy&pasting data and continue using our REST api with this cookes. <- not possible with Electron Postman.
As an order-of-magnitude estimate, let's assume that 1 billion users use Chrome. TFA states: "approximately 1 percent of users on Windows, Mac and Linux actively use Chrome packaged apps."
That's 10 million active users who can't install apps that they use on their next machine?
NW.js will continue to support running Chrome Apps: https://nwjs.io/blog/chrome-apps-support/
Good riddance. Hopefully they'll kill off the strange permission variations between extensions and apps too, that's been nothing but confusing and a plague on building anything useful.
If "Google says Progressive Web Apps are the future of app-like webpages."
Then why do the chrome website auditing tools promote progressive web apps as the first analytic for the performance of a page. Surely only a small subset of webpages are going to be 'app-like'.
PWAs are pretty cool. However when 60% of your users are on iOS, its not worth the investment until Apple supports them. That won’t happen because it would compete agaisnt native apps. Apple purposely blocks web apps from existing on iOS. Installed Web apps use an old WebView with less HTML5 features than Safari. Your web app is fast on Safari, but slow once installed.
I'm not keen on this decision.
Chrome Apps could do more than progressive web apps could do but less than Electron apps. For some uses, now your only option is to implement an Electron app.
Electron is much heavier, requires more trust because its a native app, makes cross platform support harder and you're missing out on the update, payment and discoverability features of the Chrome Web Store.
I'd prefer progressive web apps over Electron and Chrome Apps but they're not powerful enough to replace all use cases yet. I agree Chrome Apps weren't being widely used but I like the idea behind web apps replacing native apps (including Electron) where suitable.
After the frustration I faced when google killed iGoogle, I decided that I would never again become invested in anything from Google other than search and email.
I'm using only Vysor and Postman Chrome Apps. So I can probably switch to their Electron variants. But have mixed feeling about Chrome Apps discontinued. On one hand it's good as Chrome Apps were tied just to Chrome/ChromeOS, while web apps should be platform agnostic. On other hand, Chrome apps were much smaller than Electron apps, as Election runtime has not to be included with every app (Chrome was the shared runtime). There is about 2 orders of magnitude size difference (megabytes vs. hundreds of MBs).
Wish we have system level support for Electron apps, so not every single one has to bundle Electron libraries separately.
Edit: There is already project that is targeting that. https://medium.com/dailyjs/put-your-electron-app-on-a-diet-w...
Then...does it means they will shut down Chromebook as well? I can't understand. Chrome apps supported the environment of not only Chrome browser but Chrome OS as well so far. Do they have other plan for Chromebook? Weird decision...weird.
I'm really confused about what this means for Chrome Apps on ChromeOS. We use Electron for Windows/Mac/Linux but as far as I know Chrome Apps are still the only game in town for ChromeOS. Is there another way to release apps for Chrome OS?
> Google said that "approximately 1 percent of users on Windows, Mac and Linux actively use Chrome packaged apps."
Well, if you delegate discovery of said apps to a small icon no one can see on screen, then no surprise.
Anyone have any suggestions for a replacement for Authy?
It's a 2FA Chrome App that syncs your 2FA tokens across devices.
They have a 'desktop app' now available for Mac and Windows, but of course nothing for Linux (surprise surprise).
So any equivalent that will work cross platform and sync too?
What's the future for Chrome Remote Desktop?
Will you still be able to manually add webpages as apps to run them in separate windows? It's so nice to run youtube in a window without url-bar or tabs-
I'm use the Chrome App version of Pocket to download and read my Pocket articles offline on Windows 10. Any suggestions for a replacement?
I'm currently trying Poki  but I find it's offline reading features too limited for my tastes.
Pocket hints they may produce a Windows 10 app but that's a vague promise at the moment.
I hate that Google axes features because only 1% of users are using them.
1% of Chrome’s users are millions of users.
I only ever used one-the SSH client. It was far nicer than PUTTY for those occasions where I needed to SSH from windows. Maybe I'll just do it from Termux on my phone from now on.
Don't forget about application mode in Chrome: Menu > Tools > Add to desktop. It will then run the web site "chrome-less" without address bar etc.
Pity. The underlying Nacl/PNacl technology is eons ahead of wasm, with better, if not equivalent security. It even had simd support!
What's going to happen to the SSH app? It was awesome for when I didn't have access to a full-fat client.
So... anyone knows a good VideoStream replacement?