Angry Birds flying to the Web

Rovio's popular mobile game can now be played on a Web browser, with some special levels available only for Chrome users.

Peter Vesterbacka, head of Rovio, introduced the popular Angry Birds game for the Chrome browser at the Google I/O developer conference. James Martin/CNET

SAN FRANCISCO--Angry Birds is coming to Web.

At the Google I/O developer conference today, Rovio head Peter Vesterbacka took the stage and demonstrated the popular game played in the Google Chrome browser.

Angry Birds screenshot
Rovio

Rovio is using the Google Web Toolkit (GWT) to build the Web-based app. And it's hosted on the Google App engine. The game is available free of charge in Google's Chrome Web Store in "beta."

Vesterbacka said Rovio liked Chrome in particular for the browser-based version of the game. Building Web apps with high-end graphics is tough in a browser, CNET's Stephen Shankland noted in his live blog of the event . But Chrome offers the experience that can handle it, according to Vesterbacka.

"We didn't want to compromise on performance," he said. "We haven't been able to bring this to the Web. It hasn't been possible until today. We are bringing Angry Birds to the biggest platform out there, the Web."

Rovio has built some special levels available only for the Chrome browser and the game includes some Chrome-specific tidbits like Chrome rocks, flowers, and clouds.

Related link
• Complete coverage: Google I/O

Rovio will use the new in-app payments from Google to allow users to get to premium levels. And Vesterbacka said he is happy about the price point. Google is allowing developers to keep 95 percent of the sale price of their apps.

"We're all for lower taxes," he said. "And 5 percent is fair."

Angry Birds in Chrome joins other desktop implementations, including a paid version on OS X through Apple's Mac App Store, as well as on Windows Machines through the Intel AppUp store.

Here are some shots from within the new title:

The new and exclusive "Chrome dimension" which is opened up after users finish the first set of levels.
The new and exclusive "Chrome dimension" which is opened up after users finish the first set of levels. Josh Lowensohn/CNET

The Chrome version of Angry Birds features the same first level pack from the original title, but not the other four just yet.
The Chrome version of Angry Birds features the same first level pack from the original title, but not the other four just yet. Josh Lowensohn/CNET
 

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