Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Connect with Web Intents

Last year we proposed the Web Intents API to help web applications integrate with one another with minimal effort. We've now enabled an experimental version of the API in the most recent stable version of Chrome, to gather feedback from the web community and shape the future of the Web Intents API.

This prototype version of Web Intents makes it easier for developers to try out the API and experience its benefits first hand:
  • Developers who build client apps will be able to easily include functionality from other web services (e.g., photo editing). 
  • Developers creating those services will no longer need to invest time and resources to negotiate and build hardcoded integrations - they can just focus on offering a great quality product with the integration facilitated by the API. 
In addition, this implementation of Web Intents can help the design discussions in the W3C web intents open standards list. After all, it's impossible to build a complex API—especially one that requires an ecosystem of apps—without feedback from web developers using it in the wild.

We expect that Web Intents will evolve significantly, potentially in backwards-incompatible ways, as feedback from real world usage trickles in. Because of its experimental status, the current live version is prefixed and only allows applications to register as services in their Chrome Web Store app manifest.

Once the API is stable, we plan to remove this restriction.

To learn more on how to use the experimental Web Intents API check out the Web Developers' Guide to Web Intents in Chrome. If you choose to experiment with Web Intents, be sure to follow our discussion group, where we'll announce any impending breaking changes in Chrome's implementation.