Monday , May 28 2018

Google brings the ChromeOS experience to Windows 8

Back last October, Google started letting out its secret plans for ChromeOS on Windows 8, but being as it was part of the developer build of Chrome, not many people saw it. However, from today, Google is rolling out an update to the Chrome browser for Windows which features a new user-interface, allowing users to effectively emulate the ChromeOS experience while retaining Windows compatibility.

Key features are the ability for Chrome windows to ‘snap’ to the left or right of the display, or to take over in full-screen mode, just like native Windows applications. You even get a ChromeOS-style dock with easy access to Google services like Chrome, Gmail, Google Search, Docs and Youtube, all of which you can customise.

There’s also a ChromeOS style app launcher which allows you direct access to any Chrome apps you’ve installed, and just like ChromeOS, all your apps will sync across your Chrome profiles on different devices.

Google has achieved this using a special mode enabled in Windows 8 that allows web browsers set as the default browser to launch in Microsoft’s ‘Metro-style’ environment. You can still install these browser apps via the Windows Store, and they still launch as desktop applications, but once launched, they can take over a fair amount of the normal functionality.

For those who like the idea of a Chromebook, this is especially cool as it allows you to get most of the feel for how ChromeOS works without doing anything more than installing (or updating) Chrome on your Windows PC.

Have you tried the latest Chrome build on Windows? How do you find it?

Source: Google Chrome Blog.

Chris Rowland   Editor and Publisher

Chris has been at the forefront of smartphone reporting in Australia since smartphones were a thing, and has used mobile phones since they came with giant lead-acid batteries that were "transportable" and were carried in a shoulder bag. He saw the transition from AMPS to GSM, loved the Motorola StarTac, and got into Palm technologies in a big way. The arrival some years later of the original iPhone, and then the early Androids, awoke a new interest in mobile technology, and Chris has been writing about it since.

Today, Chris publishes one of Australia's most popular technology websites, Ausdroid. His interests include mobile (of course), as well as connected technology and how it can make all our lives easier.

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pbarbaro
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pbarbaro

This update didn’t work on my surface. It just shrunk the screen size right up into the top left hand corner. Will try a fresh reinstall.

Ausdroid Reader

Didn’t you guys start a separate website for Chrome news?

Chris
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We did, but we’ve folded it back into Ausdroid. One site is easier to maintain than two.

JeniSkunk
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JeniSkunk

Is a site rename in order to consider then?

AusChromeDroid

Chris
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I don’t think so Jeni.. we like Ausdroid as a brand. It’s quite common for Android-focused blogs to cover related news, and ChromeOS fits in that.

Ausdroid Reader

Much like Macrumors for apple stuff had expanded to cover more than just Macintosh news. However yey for Ausdroid. Love your site. 🙂

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