Google is scrambling to fix a Chrome bug that's breaking some Android apps

A recent update created problems for WebView.

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When Google updated its Chrome browser to version 79 last week, Android’s WebView updated, too. That’s turned out to be problematic, because the Chrome update had a bug that’s resulted in data loss in some Android apps. If you’re an Android user and you opened one of your apps on the weekend only to have it look like you were opening it for the first time, Chrome 79 is likely to blame.

Not so fast — CNET says Google halted the update rollout, but that doesn’t help the nearly 50 percent of users who have already downloaded the faulty version. Google acknowledged the problem on the Chromium blog and says it’s looking into possible fixes.

Missing not dead — The good news for affected app developers and end-users is that the problem boils down to data migration. So if it's an affected game, for instance, the errant data isn’t gone forever, it’s more accurate to think of it as misplaced.

In case you’re wondering what WebView and Android have to do with Chrome, many apps aren’t full-blown or native ones that access databases directly, but rather simple wrappers for websites. So while apps like Instagram won’t be affected, your local gym’s crusty membership one might well be. Expect to see a fix sometime later this week.