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Chromium looking to improve browser compatbility based on MDN web dev survey

about 2 years ago by IanDorfman

In response to findings from the 2019 Mozilla Developer Network Web DNA Report, the Chromium development team wrote an official blog post discussing the results and planning how to improve the open-source browser's compatibility.

Chrome Software Engineer Stephen McGruer describes how the MDN ran an additional Browser Compatibility Survey in March of 2020 in order to help the Chromium development team better understand what developers need. Over 3,000 developers took the survey, with many also providing more detailed feedback in post-survey questionnaires.

The following major points came up in the survey enough for the Chromium devs to focus on them for the purpose of this post:

• Flexbox: as a frequently used web layout tool that adjusts layouts dynamically based on differently sized viewports, Chrome's web team will implement a Chromium Flexbox implementation using the browser's LayoutNG layout engine

• Scrolling: Research will be done into how virtual keyboards impact viewport units in different Chromium-based web browsers, input event inconsistencies, and differences in scrolling behavior across browsers

• Form controls: form stylability will be worked on with focus on more precise specifications and consistency, though the team has "nothing specific to announce" outside of looking into the issue more through the remainder of 2020

• CSS Grid: Chromium does not support subgrid, but will in the future due to the Microsoft Edge development team working on a LayoutNG-based Chromium implementation

• Launching new web features while maintaining compatibility, with McGruer stating that the dev team will be "more rigorous" in how it implements and communicates new web-based features

No defined timetable has been given as to when these improvements will be implemented in Chromium directly alongside the popular web browsers it powers such as Google Chrome, though the post concludes with the Chromium development team "looking forward to a more compatible 2021."

Further coverage: Chromium blog

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Chromium is an open-source browser project that aims to build a safer, faster, and more stable way for all users to experience the web.