Mar 26th, 2015

Google has made many improvements to Chrome over the years to increase stability, add features and make it a much smoother experience, but one thing they have had trouble solving is the occasional lag and stutter you’ll get when strolling through a web page. No matter how many advancements they make in development and no matter how powerful your hardware is, it happens.

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But it seems they’re finally looking to make the one move that should rid us of that evil once and for all. The company recently confirmed that they will look to implement the Pointer Events API, which is an all-encompassing standard for mouse, touch and stylus input. Microsoft, with help from Mozilla, was the company that originally proposed this new standard to the W3C.

Pointer Events offers some technical advantages over the existing use of Touch Events and Mouse Events.  Most notably, pointer event listeners never block scrolling, and so replacing all touch event handlers with pointer event handlers will address the main longstanding source of scroll-start jank we see on Android (irrespective of whatever scheduler improvements we’re able to make to better prioritize input handling).

Google was hesitant at first, but after folks started to see the benefits of Pointer Events (smoother scrolling, more responsive link and button presses and other various improvements) in the latest versions of Internet Explorer they urged Google to ditch the old Touch Events method they currently use. The response was so overwhelming that they practically had no choice but to agree.

So when’s it coming? That’s one question Google can’t answer just yet. The company says there are still a lot of technical challenges, constraints and risks they have to solve before implementing the API, and as such they aren’t giving any sort of timeline.

Whether it be here within the next few months or three years from now, it’s in the works, and that’s all we know. We’re just happy to know that they’re considering it at all, and we hope it’ll finally solve one of the most frustrating problems that comes with using Chrome for Android.

[via The Verge]