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Google Has Stopped Developing Gears

by Abel Avram on Dec 01, 2009 |

Google seems to be no longer interested in further developing Gears, promoting HTML 5 instead.

In an bug entered for Chromium on Mac OS, Issue 13161, having the description “Gears is not supported”, Mike Pinkerton, Technical Lead for Google Chrome for Mac, commented: “we're not supporting gears on mac in favor of HTML5 additions.” The bug’s status is “Won’t Fix”. So, the upcoming version of Chrome for Mac will no longer use Gears for certain operations like offline browsing or drag and drop.

The reason mentioned by Pinkerton was favoring HTML 5 which will offer offline browsing and the rest of the features currently available in Gears. The problem is that HTML 5 is still far from being fully standardized and IE is still not supporting it. Google’s move shows its confidence in HTML 5’s chance to succeed, and even Microsoft will include some of it in IE 9.

In the meantime, L.A. Times reported that a representative wanted to clarify Google’s position on Gears:

We're continuing to support Gears so that nothing breaks for sites that use it. But we expect developers to use HTML5 for these features moving forward as it's a standards-based approach that will be available across all browsers.

That means Google will continue to fix bugs in existing Gears code but they won’t add anything new to it. Developers will get the idea: move to HTML 5 if possible. 

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