A polyglot Google Chrome beta, with new privacy features

March 1st, 2010

Whether you’re catching up on your favorite Arabic gameshow, getting up to speed on the latest Korean mobile gadgetry, or researching the local perspective for a dream trip to Machu Picchu, we’re all constantly reminded that the internet is an amazingly multilingual place. The Google Chrome team is excited to introduce a new beta feature to help our users navigate the multilingual web: instant machine translation of webpages, without the need for any browser extensions or plug-ins.

How does it work? When the language of the webpage you’re viewing is different from your preferred language setting, Chrome will display a prompt asking if you’d like the page to be translated for you using Google Translate.

Here’s a demo of the translation feature by Jay Civelli, one of the engineers who developed it:

For more on how automatic translation in Chrome works, read on in our Help Center article. We hope that the development of online translation tools like this one will help make all the world’s information universally accessible in an easy, frictionless way – imagine reading a diversity of foreign language news sources in your mother tongue, or easily conducting online commerce across borders and languages.

With today’s beta release, we’re also excited to introduce new features that will give you even greater choice and control over your privacy as you browse the web. We realize that many users have questions about privacy in browsers, so we’ve produced a short video to help users better understand privacy in the browser:

In addition to Chrome’s existing incognito mode – a handy way to browse the web without leaving traces of website visits on your computer or downloads in your browser history – you can now manage your privacy settings in the new “Privacy” section of Chrome’s Options dialog. From these settings, you can control how browser cookies, images, JavaScript, plug-ins, and pop-ups are handled on a site-by-site basis. For example, you can set up cookie rules to allow cookies specifically only for sites that you trust, and block cookies from untrusted sites.

A polyglot Google Chrome beta, with new privacy features

You can read more about these features, or watch videos explaining how your privacy is handled in Chrome’s various features including search and suggestions, browser cookies, Safe Browsing technology, and automatic security updates.

Try out all these new features for yourself in today’s beta release. For those of you already on the beta channel, you’ll soon be updated automatically. And for those of you on the stable channel, we’ll be making Chrome’s new translation and privacy features available to you in the coming weeks. Till our next update, auf Wiedersehen!

Posted by Wieland Holfelder, Engineering Director, Google Munich