What is Google Chrome on ARM, and how is it different from the classic version for Windows 11?

Chrome users can finally install the browser natively on their ARM devices running Windows 11.

Chrome update page
Chrome update page / Image: Mauro Huculak
  • Google Chrome on ARM is the same browser you already know but for a different platform.
  • The new version of the browser offers better performance and a smoother and more responsive experience. 
  • You can download the ARM version of Chrome from the stable channel on your Windows 11 computer.

Google has released a new version of its Chrome browser for Windows 11, but it’s not for traditional devices like those featuring Intel or AMD processors. Instead, it’s a new version for computers equipped with ARM chips, such as the new Qualcomm Snapdragon X Elite.

The two versions of the browser are identical in terms of features and design, but the difference is in the code base that makes up the application since apps designed for Intel and AMD (usually referred to as x86) are not compatible with ARM. So, Google only created a native version of the browser for the ARM platform.

In the past, Microsoft tried using emulation to run x86 apps, including Chrome, on the ARM platform, but the experience was not optimal. This was one of the many reasons the ARM platform still hasn’t taken off.

It’s important to note that Microsoft already provides a version of the Edge browser (based on the Chromium engine) and Mozilla a version of its Firefox browser for ARM. Google is just showing up fashionably late to the party with the ARM version of Chrome.

In the market, you can find a few Windows on ARM devices, such as the Surface Pro 9 (5G), Lenovo ThinkPad X13S, Asus ExpertBook B3, Dell Inspiron 14 (2023), and others. However, the upcoming release of the Snapdragon X Elite is specifically designed for Windows 11, and it will offer better performance (arguably at the same or better than Intel and AMD) and on-device AI processing while providing unparalleled battery efficiency.

A native version of Chrome for these new types of Windows 11 devices means better performance as if you were using the browser on an x86 computer. This translates into a smoother and more responsive web surfing experience. Google also assures strong security on the web and access to extensions and themes you already know on the regular version of the browser.

If you have been using Chrome on your Intel or AMD computer, the experience should now be the same on ARM devices in terms of performance, design, and functionalities.

Some users are already downloading the new version of the browser on their devices, and they claim double the performance and efficiency.

You can download Chrome from this Google page if you have a laptop or device with an ARM processor.

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 15 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 21 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and About.me. Email him at [email protected].