On tablets like Apple’s iPad, websites viewed in Safari are usually the desktop version of the website. This is because of the larger display which makes it easier for users to interact with the website’s elements, versus a smaller display like a smartphone where websites load a mobile version.
It looks like Google is going to do the same thing for Chrome. The company has announced that Chrome on “premium” Android tablets will now load desktop versions of websites by default. According to Google, this is done to take advantage of how premium tablets have higher-end hardware and can take advantage of the desktop version of websites.
“As the Android tablet ecosystem has seen more large and powerful devices become readily available, we’ve found that the desktop website can often be a better experience than the mobile site. Mobile websites that were designed for small screens and low RAM don’t always take advantage of the large screen and other powerful device capabilities. Therefore, for premium tablets, desktop mode is now the default.”
As to what defines a “premium” tablet, Google says that these devices need to have at least a 10-inch display and 8GB of RAM. That being said, keep in mind that Chrome users on Android can always manually request the desktop version of a website through the app’s settings, it’s just that for these “premium” tablets, it will be done by default and automatically.