Google's known for regularly tinkering around with its apps through server-side updates, staged rollouts, and A/B testing, all for the sake of improving the user experience. While most of these changes are executed without a hitch, every now and then, something big breaks. Most recently, Google managed to crash the Stable version of the Chrome browser on thousands of business machines without warning.
After successfully testing the experimental WebContents Occlusion flag on the Beta version of Chrome for nearly half of 2019, Google decided to push this feature out to the Stable channel as a default setting. Instead of curbing Chrome's thirst for battery and RAM while not in use, the enabled flag made it impossible for employees to access virtual machine environments, like Citrix, rendering Chrome unresponsive in these instances. The incessant white screen of death left IT staff at countless businesses scrambling to solve a problem they didn't roll out to their employees.
As if overstepping IT admins to update business devices wasn't bad enough, Google almost never publishes coherent Chrome changelogs for non-developers — including many IT professionals — to read. This makes these sorts of errors almost impossible to identify and resolve without Google's intervention. Luckily, the change has since been rolled back, un-breaking the affected devices and restoring order to frustrated businesses.
- The Verge