File Under: Browsers

Chrome Drops OS X 10.5, Adds New Video and Gaming Tools

Chrome 22, which Google just dropped into the Chrome developer channel, marks the end of the line for Mac OS X 10.5 users. When Chrome 22 arrives in final form roughly three months from now it will require OS X 10.6 or newer.

Apple’s OS X 10.5 is looking a little long in the tooth these days, having been released some five years ago. Chrome isn’t the first to drop Leopard support, Mozilla’s recently released Firefox 13 does likewise and even Apple hasn’t updated Leopard since 2009.

If you aren’t using Leopard, you can grab the latest Chrome dev channel release from Google.

On the plus side for Leopard users (and everyone else), Chrome 21 — which has now been promoted to the beta channel — supports the getUserMedia API, which allows web developers to tap your device’s camera and microphone. That means web-based chat apps will work in Chrome. It also opens the door to other audio and video web apps that would once have required Flash or platform-native apps.

The getUserMedia support is also the first step in supporting the Web Real Time Communication (WebRTC) standard, which is also part of recent Firefox and Opera releases. Opera has some demos that show what WebRTC and getUserMedia can do. For another cool example of getUserMedia check out Magic Xylophone from developers Romuald Quantin and Magnus Dahlstrand of Stinkdigital.

Chrome 21′s getUserMedia isn’t the browser’s only new trick, this release also introduces support for the Gamepad Javascript API, which will allow developers to write web-based games that use videogame controllers.