Today Google has released Metro version of Chrome with the release of latest Chrome Dev..channel, we’ve covered this news already, now we’re going to look at how Chrome in Metro mode is different from Chrome on the desktop in Windows 8 Release Preview. Seems Google not respected Microsoft’s design guidelines of metro apps- generally Chrome metro should have been made available via Windows Store, instead Chrome offers it as a direct download for Windows 8 users via its dev. channel.

Metro version of Chrome will be available to users only if Chrome on desktop set as default browser, if you set a browser other than Chrome as default, then Chrome in metro disappears. You need to click on Chrome tile on start screen to enter into Metro environment.

Chrome in Metro: Only flash no other plugins allowed

Chrome with built-in flash player 11.3 plays all flash content, but Metro style Chrome won’t support other plugins like Silverlight and Java. Chrome follows Metro IE here- Microsoft integrated Flash into Metro IE and allows flash for some sites only. By not allowing install of other plugins battery life can be increased and also yields in clean, secure and fast browser experience for users.

Chrome optimized for touch devices

When you enter into Windows 8 mode mode, you can see UI looks more familiar what we used to in Windows 7,  but the UI is aimed at touch screen devices such as tablets. Though there are no maximize, minimize, resize buttons in metro version, you can access them by right-clicking on empty space on tab strip, you can also find on desktop version.

window buttons

Both Chrome on desktop and metro can be run simultaneously

By running both versions of Chrome simultaneously we’ve been able to compare their memory usage on Windows 8 Task Manager, we’ve noted that Windows 8 Chrome consumes more memory that desktop one. Memory usage of Chrome (both versions) shown on Task Manager. And you should know that when you’re on desktop not using Chrome metro, it will be suspended, screenshot below on Process Explorer just shows that.

Chrome memory usagechrome process hierarchy in process explorer

Both versions are separate applications and don’t share add-ons, themes: Though Chrome is one app that available in two flavors in Windows 8, Chrome desktop and Chrome metro. Both are different and extension installed for Chrome in Metro won’t install for Chrome on desktop and vice versa.