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Chrome is the next Android app to get tablet updates

Chrome is the next Android app to get tablet updates

Google is rolling out a series of user interface updates for its Chrome browser on Android tablets as it prepares for the launching its Pixel tablet next year. The update started rolling out to a small number of users last week, but should reach the majority in the coming days. It includes changes to the way Chrome handles tabs on Android, a new drag-and-drop feature, and an option for the browser to always look for the desktop (rather than mobile) version of a website.

Chrome's new tab interface for tablets.

Chrome’s new tab interface for tablets.
Image: Google

For starters, Google is changing the way Chrome’s Android tablet app handles tabs. It adds a web interface that makes it easy to preview card previews before you select them, and says it will soon add a similar card grouping feature to what’s available on the desktop. There’s also a shortcut to quickly switch between the current and previously opened tabs, and another to quickly reopen a tab if you accidentally close it.

There are also a few features that appear to be inspired by Apple’s recent updates to its iPad operating system. Most notably, Chrome’s Android app gets the option to default to the desktop version of a website to avoid those awkward situations where you’re viewing a mobile-optimized website on a laptop-sized tablet screen. Drag and drop functionality that appeared in the Documents, Spreadsheets and Drive earlier this year now also comes to Chrome, allowing you to drag images, text and links from the browser into other applications.

Chrome's new drag and drop feature.

Drag and drop an image from Chrome to Keep.
Image: Google

Google has been criticized for the state of the Android tablet app ecosystem yearsbut it seems the company’s desire to make its upcoming Pixel Tablet a success — not to mention the continued emergence of large-screen foldables — has finally led it to make a serious effort to improve things after first teasing the device in May.



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