You can get a lot done with Google Chrome, which is probably why its use dwarfs that of competing internet browsers like Firefox, Microsoft Edge, and Safari. Ease of use is a top selling point too, from cross-platform syncing to quiet updates.
For the most part, those updates are on auto-pilot; you don’t have to do much beyond opening and closing the browser window. But there are some exceptions. If you want to make sure Google is doing its job, here’s how.
Chrome’s Update Schedule
Google has a publicly available calendar with estimated launch dates for upcoming versions of Chrome. The schedule typically has a new release every one or two months. Chrome 80, for example, arrived in December 2019, followed by Chrome 81 at the end of January 2020. Chrome 82 is expected this month.
The updates are automatic; when they’re available, Chrome will apply them the next time you open your browser window. With so many users, it can take a few days to a full week for everyone to get the latest version. But you can also manually trigger an update to ensure you’re on the latest version as soon as it’s released.
Update Chrome on Desktop
If you don’t close Chrome, updates will not be applied. You can tell when Chrome has an update because an arrow icon will appear in the top-right corner of the browser. Eventually that icon will go from green, to yellow, then to red if you don’t restart Chrome, signifying that your instance is now out of date.
If you have an update pending, click that icon in the right-hand corner and select Update Google Chrome in the menu. Chrome will then shut down and restart the browser with the update applied.
Which Version of Chrome Am I On?
If there’s no alert, but you want to know which version of Chrome you’re running, click the three-dot icon in the top-right corner and select Help > About Google Chrome. On mobile, tap Settings > About Chrome (Android) or Settings > Google Chrome (iOS). Here, Chrome tells you which version you’re running—in my case, Version 80.0.3987.116 (Official Build) (64-bit). This page will also remind you of any pending updates and give the option to install them by clicking the Relaunch button.
Update on iPhone
Most iPhone users probably have apps set to automatically update, a feature that’s been available since iOS 7. To check the status of this setting, navigate to Settings > iTunes & App Store > App Updates and toggle it on (or off).
To check manually, open the App Store app and search for the Chrome app. If the button next to it says “Open,” the app is up to date. If it says “Update,” tap that to get the most recent version. You can also tap Today at the bottom of the App Store app, tap your profile icon on the top right, and scroll down to see if Chrome is in the list under Available/Upcoming updates. If so, tap Update.
Update Chrome on Android
On Android, you update Chrome in the Google Play Store. After launching the storefront, tap the hamburger menu in the top-left corner of the screen by the Google Play search bar, and tap My Apps & Games.
If the Google Chrome icon is among the list of pending updates, tap the update button next to it. If it is not included in the list, the Chrome app is already up to date. Android also allows for automatic app updates; here are your options.