Avast begins bundling Google Chrome as part of installation

For the first time in 21 years, Avast is offering the option to install Google Chrome as part of the installation routine for users who do not have the browser installed on their computer.

According to a report from The Download Blog, Chrome is being offered via the installer for Avast! Home Edition 4.8 as being a recommended piece of software. By default, both the "yes, install" and "no, don't install" options are de-selected, which effectively forces users to make a decision as to whether or not they want to install Chrome, preventing them from simply clicking on "next" and not realizing that they have opted in to installing the browser.

This isn't the first time that Google Chrome has been bundled as part of an installation routine. Earlier this year, Real Networks began including the option to install the browser as part of the installation process for RealPlayer, and there may be other deals in the works that would see Chrome being distributed to a wider group of people in the near future as Google looks to increase Chrome's popularity.

Google's Vice President of Product Management Sundar Pichai said that Chrome had more than 40 million users at the Chrome OS press conference which took place at the end of October, and the end of November saw NetApplications suggest that Chrome is holding 3.93% of the browser market.

"Users' response to Google Chrome has been outstanding, and we're continuing to explore ways to make Chrome accessible to even more people. This could potentially include distribution via a number of channels, such as the distribution we are currently doing with Avast," said a spokesperson for Google.

Avast is close to reaching 100 million registered users, and are currently planning to send their 100-millionth user on an all expenses paid trip to Prague, the home of Alwil Software.

Thanks to Neowin member Gustapo for the news tip!

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54 Comments

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I remember that around 15 years ago there was speculation that they would begin offering Chrome once Google had been created and the browser designed...

I am an avast! user and I find it really respectable that avast doesn't force the user to install Chrome on their PC's.

mr.r9 said,
I am an avast! user and I find it really respectable that avast doesn't force the user to install Chrome on their PC's.

I totally agree, but alot of comment's here seem to forget that with their
anti-avast and whining comments.

At least both options come unchecked unlike alot of programs that come with bundled software to auto install.. and i wonder how much Google paid to get them to bundle it? Whats next.... Google Chrome Bundled with MSE? lol

Wonder if any more will follow suit?

Or will Google just buy Avast or make there own AV!

Where will it all end..............

Ah, they're using chrome to make the false positives seem non existant, great.

And they've been around nearly as long as F-PROT

Lots of antivirus software phone home as well. Just saying. ;)

Google to track how their browser is used, antivirus companies to track how viruses infect your computer.
http://www.itsecurityportal.com/virusmap.asp

AFAIK, Google doesn't collect IP addresses (only browser ID's), but antivirus companies do, however. (to know your geographic location for their maps)

I don't like bundles and I think they should default the choice to "no" instead of forcing users to choose between "yes" and "no". Some people will choose yes just because they thrust the company but don't think about if they need or not a new browser.

Making no default answer is better than defaulting to "yes", but I think there are better ways for generate revenue. An option would be to show an alert or popup every week asking the users if they want X or Y application. They can even offer different things to the user and if the user chooses not to install any given application, they should not ask about it again.

As if tossing in browser toolbars wasn't enough, now whole browsers. Sure they got some google money tossed their way for this, which is fine, but no thanks. I actually have iron installed, but hardly use it.

I don't mind software bundling. It's irksome, but I understand that they need to generate revenue somehow to keep their products available for FREE. Even more irksome, however, is that most software bundles will install the bundled software by default unless you opt out. I am always vigilant for bundled software when I install anything free, but I think forcing users to choose instead of defaulting to "yes" is a fantastic idea and I applaud them using that approach.

...Chrome being distributed to a wider group of people in the near future as Google looks to increase Chrome's popularity.
Doing things like this LOWER the popularity with me. I, sick of having to uncheck browser addons (with Java) and other software every god damned time I install them.

If I wanted the crap I would go out and get it.

wow, a lot of ignorance in the comment section (not surprised)

Avast will not automatically install nor will it automatically not install Chrome. YOU, the user, still have a choice. They aren't forcing people to do anything, just making a suggestion.

ddtt21958 said,
They aren't forcing people to do anything, just making a suggestion.
They are forcing people to choose.

You've got to be Joking - why on earth would an AntiVirus company install a web browser?

If people want chrome they will install it, if they don't they don't want an antivirus program doing it for them, It actually sounds exactly what an antivirus program should NOT do - install something else along with the intended program!

dvb2000 said,
You've got to be Joking - why on earth would an AntiVirus company install a web browser?

Because it's more secure! (well, or so the browser developers argue)

Punchy McHurt said,
For forcing you to choose "no", if you don't want to install Chrome? What were the other reasons?

But they are evil Google sympathizers!!

Billus said,
Oh lordy, I wonder how many will just click yes without really knowing what they're doing...

"By default, both the "yes, install" and "no, don't install" options are de-selected, which effectively forces users to make a decision as to whether or not they want to install Chrome, preventing them from simply clicking on "next" and not realizing that they have opted in to installing the browser."

Punchy McHurt said,
"By default, both the "yes, install" and "no, don't install" options are de-selected, which effectively forces users to make a decision as to whether or not they want to install Chrome, preventing them from simply clicking on "next" and not realizing that they have opted in to installing the browser."

Yet many will think "uh, yes I want to install Avast..that's what I'm doing already, stupid!"

I despise bundling software together. I would much prefer for them to just show a small dialog at the end of instatllation that says something like: Hey! You may enjoy some of our partner's software, check these software titles out. Followed by links to their recommended software.

From the sounds of things at least they're offering it in a way that you can't accidentally install the extra software. Its good that some companies are finally making the extra software the non-default choice during installation.

That said, I still dislike software being bundled together. If I wanted the extra software, I would've downloaded and installed it myself.

Well, though I don't like the act of bundling software, I have to applaud Avast for not selecting to install it by default. THAT I really hate. I'm glad that the user has to opt in to this unnecessary install, and hope that companies that don't handle bundled software like this change their practices...

I did a double take at the 21 years part, I had no idea Avast had been around that long. I hate bundling though. Yes with high speed internet it's not such a huge issue, but I still don't want to download toolbars or other crap that I don't want or will never use. Plus I keep all my updates and software on a DVD-R, so saving space is important. Hey software companies, please stop doing this.

Saburac said,
I did a double take at the 21 years part, I had no idea Avast had been around that long. I hate bundling though. Yes with high speed internet it's not such a huge issue, but I still don't want to download toolbars or other crap that I don't want or will never use. Plus I keep all my updates and software on a DVD-R, so saving space is important. Hey software companies, please stop doing this.

I didn't realize they had been around that long either.

Kalel83 said,
for the first time in 21 years? where did you get that number?

Avast has been around since 1988, believe it or not. It's surprising when you think about it.

Kristan K said,
Avast has been around since 1988, believe it or not. It's surprising when you think about it.


For the first time in 21 years Avast is bundling a 1 year old browser.... that's how it reads.

Yeah it sounds kind of goofy. Chrome didn't exist 21 years ago so of course this is the first time they have bundled it.