Google has this week rolled out some new Chrome development tools which are being designed to provide better OS integration in Chrome packaged applications.
The new Chrome Developer Channel release brings Chrome packaged applications enhanced access to Google services such as Analytics, Google APIs and Google Wallet.
The latest Chrome Developer tools also bring Bluetooth and enhanced meeting application communication within its improved OS integration. Google explains a little more about the new Chrome developer tools rolled out this week.
The Analytics API makes it easy for packaged app developers to collect user engagement data from their applications. Developers can then use Google Analytics reports to measure number of active users, adoption and usage of specific features, and many other useful metrics.
Enhancements to Media Gallery API
The Media Gallery API allows packaged apps to read media (music, videos and images) from the local disk with user consent. Starting with this release, a user’s iTunes music library will be available as a default media gallery, allowing apps to import and play locally stored music.
The Bluetooth API, based on the 4.0 specification, allows packaged apps to connect to Bluetooth devices such as smartphones and headsets. The API’s Low Energy support allows Chrome packaged apps to automatically sync data from low energy health devices like fitness trackers and heart rate sensors.
Native Messaging API
The Native Messaging API allows Chrome packaged apps to communicate with native applications. This API can be used by a Chrome packaged app to communicate with native binaries that drive consumer electronics such as motion sensors or scanners.
During this preview period, packaged apps are available to Chrome Dev channel users in the Chrome Web Store. We’ve already seen lots of interesting packaged apps uploaded, and we look forward to seeing developers take advantage of these powerful new capabilities. We welcome your feedback on our G+ Developers page or on our developer forum.
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