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On Google Chrome omitting the http:// from the Omnibox

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Recently a Google Chrome update removed the ‘http://’ from the Omnibox (aka the address/search bar). When the change was originally introduced in the development branch of Google Chrome in April this year there was massive backlash (~150 comments on a bug, specifically Bug 41467). Of course within about 5 days the comments died down and everyone moved on with their lives. The Chromium team have marked the ‘bug’ as ‘Won’t fix’.

Now the feature has hit the main release. If you still aren’t sure what I’m talking about, here’s a screenshot:

The Omnibox sans 'http://'

Personally I like the change, and here’s why:

  • Copy and Paste use cases still work (at least they do on my machine).
  • Because I read left to right I don’t have to skip 7 characters to get to the domain name.
  • I consider my browser to be primarily an HTTP client. I expect HTTP to be the default protocol and don’t need this information exposed.
  • My own personal biases.

Of course, HTTPS urls display differently.

Omnibox with https://

So this could be a little confusing, but it does further highlight the fact that the connection is secured.

Nevertheless one of the reasons I do include Chrome as part of my browser cycle is because it is different. This change is different from the other browsers, but it is exactly this difference that I like.