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Google is hard at work on a Metro-style version of its Chrome browser for Windows 8, a sign that the company is taking Microsoft’s new touch-friendly OS seriously.

The Windows 8 OS, which will be released later this year, lets companies develop apps for its touch-based Metro interface, as well as for a traditional desktop environment. Google’s move follows Mozilla’s decision to produce a new version of Firefox for Windows 8 in mid-February. Mozilla said at the time that building a Metro-style browser requires a different type of coding than the normal desktop app, so it needs time to develop it.

The revelation that Google is working on Windows 8 version of its browser comes from Mashable. A Google representative explained the decision to the outlet: “Our goal is to be able to offer our users a speedy, simple, secure Chrome experience across all platforms, which includes both the desktop and Metro versions of Windows 8. To that end we’re in the process of building a Metro version of Chrome along with improving desktop Chrome in Windows 8 such as adding enhanced touch support.”

Chrome and Firefox will compete with Microsoft’s pre-installed Internet Explorer 10 for Metro. Apple and Opera — which also make rival web browsers — have thus far not announced creating Metro-enabled browsers for Windows 8.

Google Chrome Japan ad: Junya Ogura/Flickr

VB Mobile SummitVentureBeat is holding its second annual MobileSummit this April 2-3 in Sausalito, Calif. The invitation-only event will debate the five key business and technology challenges facing the mobile industry today, and participants — 180 mobile executives, investors, and policymakers — will develop concrete, actionable solutions that will shape the future of themobile industry. You can find out more at our Mobile Summit site.


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