Google Chrome launched in 2008 and since then has only been available for desktop browsing. Today, the search giant introduced Chrome for Android.

The web browser – developed by Google – overtook Firefox in November 2011 as the second most widely used browser with a 28.4 percent worldwide usage share.

Similar to the desktop version, Chrome for Android was developed with a focus on speed. Top search results are loaded in the background as you type so pages appear instantly. The app also lets you swipe between an unlimited number of open tabs – unlike Apple’s Safari, which limits you to eight tabs. You can also sync bookmarks and open tabs between your desktop and mobile device.

In terms of appearance, Google has “reimagined” tabs so that they fit well on the smaller screen of a phone as well as the larger screen of a tablet. Chrome for Android will also include incognito mode for private browsing and additional privacy options.

The only downside to Chrome for Android is that it’s currently only available for Android 4.0 and higher. Google said this was done, in part, because Chrome needs to take advantage of features that were introduced in the latest build of the OS. The company hasn’t commented on whether it will become available for earlier builds of Android or iOS.

If you have a device that supports Android 4.0 – including the Galaxy Nexus, Transformer Prime, Xoom, and the Nexus S – you can download Chrome for Android now.

[Image credit: MIKI Yoshihito]