Monthly archives: July 2015

Google Chrome Textarea Input Lag

Posted on July 31, 2015

Surprisingly, Google Chrome appears to have a serious input lag problem with< textareas> after a certain amount of data is inserted. I realized this when one of the users on our forum hosting platform complained that there was a lot of input lag in the CSS editor form. They had about 90KB of data in the <textarea>- not a lot by any stretch – but were experiencing a 1 or 2 second delay for each entered character. That was mind boggling, so to test the problem I asked for their contents and tried it myself. Although my workstation is old, I’m still running a Core i7 920 and nVidia GTX 660ti on Windows 8.1 Pro. Plenty fast for rendering games let alone textarea content.

This page with just the textarea will show the problem if you are affected by the issue. Not everyone is, apparently.

By contrast, Firefox and Internet Explorer work just fine and do not have this issue. I have tried disabling hardware acceleration in Chrome to see if that fixes the problem, but to no avail.

Another interesting fact that it’s not just textareas. I tried to change it to see if an editable content tag (<p>) produced the same results, and it did. The problem doesn’t seem to be related to the tag, but simply editable text. As long as the text content stays between 30kb-40kb, the issue does not occur. Unfortunately, the issue has been reported to Google but there isn’t any sign of a fix for this. Regardless, I definitely feel this is a bug in Google Chrome since there is no reason that a page with a plain <textarea> or editable tag should have such severe input lag – whatever the contents may be.

Hopefully this saves someone some time into thinking their application is the one at fault. I ‘wasted’ some time fiddling with the service (removing jquery, and small additions the textarae) because I couldn’t honestly believe that Chrome alone was failing to handle it.  Sadly there is no solution, and because it appears to apply to tags with editable text content, that isn’t going to be a workaround either.