Google adds legacy browser support and cloud controls to Chrome for Business package


Google has added a couple of new features to its Chrome for Business web browser to entice more companies to roll out the product to their staff.

The web browser is pitched at companies that already use the Google Apps online productivity suite, as the search giant claims its cloud services work best with Chrome.

Google Chrome for Business also boasts a number of security and management features to help IT admins protect staff from falling victim to phishing attacks and malware infections, for example.

The search giant has now beefed up the offering's business features by including Legacy Browser Support to help out companies that have to rely on older browsers to deliver custom web applications.

The add-on means Chrome users will be automatically switched to a legacy browser when they need to use an older app.

To make this happen, IT admins have to set rules determining which sites should launch from Chrome into an alternate browser and roll this policy out to the affected employees.

In a blog post, Cyrus Mistry, senior product manager of Chrome for Business and Education, said firms in this situation are at risk of IT security breaches as they have to rely on older browsers.

"When companies use browsers that are two or more versions old, employees and developers are unable to benefit from the incredible web innovations of the past four or even 10 years," Mistry wrote.

"Deploying a modern browser can help bolster IT security, reduce support costs and improve browser speed and usability for employees."

The company has also introduced cloud-based management support for Google Apps for Business and Education users, which will allow users to gain access to default applications, a specially curated web app store and custom themes when they sign into Chrome from their work accounts.

"With cloud-based management, IT administrators can customise more than 100 Chrome polices and preferences for their employees from the Google Admin panel," Mistry added.

Caroline Donnelly is the news and analysis editor of IT Pro and its sister site Cloud Pro, and covers general news, as well as the storage, security, public sector, cloud and Microsoft beats. Caroline has been a member of the IT Pro/Cloud Pro team since March 2012, and has previously worked as a reporter at several B2B publications, including UK channel magazine CRN, and as features writer for local weekly newspaper, The Slough and Windsor Observer. She studied Medical Biochemistry at the University of Leicester and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism at PMA Training in 2006.