Google has been trying to radically overhaul the Chrome browser extensions experience for years, moving from Manifest V2 to Manifest V3, which will likely reduce the effectiveness of some extensions like ad blockers. But once again, that transition has been postponed indefinitely.
Last December, the company announced that Manifest V2 phasing would begin in March, but March is over and there has been no progress so far. As it turns out, the innovation isn’t finished yet, according to the development team informed on their side – they still are “Analyze feedback, make changes and improve documentation”. The developers also assured that the creators of the extensions will have enough time for the migration – at least six months. According to the latest data, this will happen next year.
In fact, there are many objective reasons to abandon Manifest V2: for example, the old version of the API allows you to develop extensions that consume too many resources. It also doesn’t work effectively with mobile platforms: Chrome for Android still doesn’t support extensions, unlike Safari on iOS. Manifest V3, on the other hand, lacks the means to intercept and modify webpage content before displaying it, which promises to make it harder for ad blockers. Google isn’t embarrassed — the company wants to go all the way and convince developers of other browsers, including Apple, Microsoft, and Mozilla, of their veracity. By the way, Mozilla has already found a compromise solution, while AdGuard said that they will cope with their task even after the final switch to Manifest V3.
Meanwhile, according to the platform chromostaticstoday 128,000 extensions are working on Manifest V2 and 34,000 support Manifest V3 – in December last year there were 136,000 and 30,000 respectively.