Chrome masks as Safari to fool Windows Live Hotmail

According to Google's Chrome Releases blog, Chrome-users no longer need to go out of their way to make Windows Live Hotmail work.

In addition to providing important security updates, Google's most recent version of Chrome--1.0.154.46--makes it easy for followers to use Windows Live Hotmail. For some reason, Windows Live Hotmail does not work properly on Chrome, unless it thinks it is some other browser, such as Apple's Safari.

Previously, Chrome-users who had wanted to be able to use Windows Live Hotmail would have to switch the user-agent manually, but now the browser will identify itself properly as "Chrome" for most normal sites but as "Safari" for URLs ending with mail.live.com.

Besides helping those who use both Chrome and Windows Live Htomail who do not know how to switch user-agents (or even what user-agents are), such moves are essential on Google's part to increase the number of Chrome-users.

If people find that a popular site such as Windows Live Hotmail does not work on Chrome, they may not bother trying the new browser. If too many people out there switch the user-agent globally on Chrome to fix problems with sites such as Windows Live Hotmail, then the true numbers of Chrome-users will not be counted by firms that provide statistics on browser usage.

Although it seems that Microsoft is working "on a proper fix", Google feels it is not in their best business interests to wait.

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