Believe it or not, a year has passed since Microsoft stopped supporting Windows XP. And even though the 13 year-old operating system no longer receives security updates -- at least not officially -- it is still being used by roughly 17 percent of Windows users. For some companies it is reason enough to continue to support Windows XP today, even though its maker has long left it for dead. And Google is one of them.
Six months after Windows XP support ended, Google announced that its Chrome browser would continue to be supported on the OS with "regular updates and security patches until at least April 2015". That was done in order to give its users more time to finish migrating to a newer Windows release, one that would, hopefully, be officially supported by Microsoft for many more years to come. Obviously, that hasn't gone as expected. But instead of pulling the plug, Google is now giving Chrome users on Windows XP another reprieve.
Google will continue to support Chrome on Windows XP "through the end of 2015", giving its users nearly nine more months to abandon ship (or so it would seem). This time, the search giant does not give us a reason why it's doing this. However, the door was left open the last time, as implied in the statement quoted in part in the paragraph above.
But it doesn't take long to realize that Chrome has too big a market share on Windows XP -- which ultimately translates into revenue -- for Google to end support and have its users embrace a rival's browser.
As you may know, no modern version of Internet Explorer is available for Windows XP, nor are any patches offered for ones that are. Internet Explorer 8 is the last release that Microsoft had in mind for its Windows XP users, and it came six years ago.
However, Mozilla has no plans to end Firefox support for Windows XP, and Opera still lists Windows XP as a supported OS for its browser. Given that Google's main rivals are still in the game, the search giant is enticed to keep going.