Google had to stop a recent Chrome update for Android due to reports of WebView-based apps experiencing data loss.
Software updates are always very important for the security of various apps, but also entire systems. As such, experts always advise users not to skip them, and to update their software as soon as possible.
— Engadget (@engadget) December 16, 2019
However, sometimes, an error tends to happen which is why software updates have to stop. This was the case with Google’s newest update for the Android version of Chrome. The tech giant had to stop the new software release due to complaints that it wiped out data from numerous third-party apps.
Chrome 79 Update Causes Disruption Due to a Flaw
The update supposedly only affected applications that use the WebView framework, such as Twitter Lite. Despite the reports that the data is ‘wiped out,’ it is technically still completely intact. The issue lies in the fact that there is no way to actually access it.
In other words, any app that relies on WebView is likely affected. The bigger the dependence on the framework, the greater the damage. However, due to varying degrees of dependency — and therefore, disruption — it is difficult to say which apps are hit the strongest.
As mentioned, Twitter Lite is one example of the app that suffered the most due to its heavy dependence on the framework, and Google’s platform, in general.
Drop in Ratings
As expected, one of the consequences of the issue is a major drop in the affected apps’ ratings, likely due to the anger of countless affected users.
However, researchers from Google reportedly realized where the issue is, and are currently working on a fix. There might be several solutions to the problem. One such solution is to move the wiped out files or to simply revert to the method that was used before the update.
In any case, Google is currently dedicating its efforts towards resolving the issue, but the users will have to remain patient for the time being. This includes those who are waiting for the fix, but also for those who are waiting for their own update to Chrome 79.
Images are courtesy of Shutterstock, Twitter.