Chrome is going to lose support for some ancient CPUs

The Chromium Development Team has announced that CPUs older than the Intel Core 2 Duo and AMD Athlon 64 will not operate with Chrome 89 and future versions as they do not meet the current minimum instruction set specifications of SSE3 (Supplemental Streaming SIMD Extensions 3) support.

So, if you’re still using the Intel Atom or Celeron M CPU, you’ll soon be counting Chrome as one of the many programs that are incompatible with your potato-like rig. Apps can no longer attempt to install a browser while running it will cause the app to crash.

It has been noted that the move only affects Windows, such as Chrome OS, Android, and Mac, which already need SSE3 support.

Anyone still using one of the affected devices will start seeing a warning (below) in Chrome 87 about the upcoming end of the service.

Google claims that only a small number of users will be adversely affected by the change; very few people outside niche retro groups are still using pre-2005 PC hardware. And if you’re in love with your old machine, Mozilla and Firefox remain viable browser alternatives that don’t need SSE3.