Google Chrome on iPhone and iPad could be about to borrow a popular Safari feature by adding multi-profile support in a future update

Chrome on iPhone
(Image credit: Future)

When Apple announced profile support was coming to Safari on iPhone and iPad as part of the iOS 17 update last year it was immediately well-received. The feature allows people to create a profile under which they can do specific types of browsing, like for work for example, and now it seems a similar feature is coming to Google's Chrome as well.

While Google is yet to confirm the feature it's reported that a basic profile-switching mechanism is currently being tested in Chrome for iPhone and iPad. It's notable that the same feature is not yet available on Android, suggesting that it could either debut on Apple's platforms first or a wider launch across all mobile platforms is in the cards.

It's still unclear what timescale Google is working to, and it's possible the plans could be nixed before launch. But fans of profiles in their web browser could be about to get a whole new option.

Keeping a low profile

As mentioned, Google has so far kept its multi-profile plans to itself but a MacObserver report suggests that those plans are very real.

"Google is currently working on a basic profile-switching mechanism for Chrome on iOS," MacObserver explains. "Once implemented, they will top it up with more advanced features. Thus, the item is aptly titled 'Implement rudimentary profile switching.' The report goes on to say that "Google is testing the UI, and it is currently behind an experimental flag. Even the name or title of the feature has yet to be decided."

That would suggest that any launch is unlikely to take place any time soon, so we wouldn't start holding your breath just yet. In the interim, Apple's Safari might be worth checking out. Maybe you've heard of it?

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Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.