Google is now rolling out version 77 of their Chrome OS and there are quite a few new changes. The most significant changes are the addition of Google Assistant and Virtual Desks to the OS. Apart from the new features, a host of other bugs have also been taken care of. You can view the complete list of bugs here. Let’s walk through the new features and see what it brings to the table for a Chromebook user.
Google Assistant now available in Chrome OS
I already hinted at the fact that you will now be able to use Google Assistant on your Chromebook. You can enable it by saying ‘Hey Google’, as usual, or from the Launcher. Enabling the assistant will allow you to do a lot of things like controlling your music, setting reminders, controlling smart devices at home, etc.
Google has been trying to get the Google Assistant on as many devices as possible. This way, it can get better with time using their proprietary machine learning techniques. A small section of users have already been using it through the beta build, but now Google has brought it to the stable channel.
Automatic Clicks have the ability to scroll
You might not be a stranger to Automatic Clicks wherein the OS does the clicking for you if there’s an inability or discomfort to use the touchpad. It is present in the Accessibility menu and makes the mouse pointer click when left stationery for a period of time. A blue circle appears over the mouse pointer and shrinks to show when the click is going to happen. With the new update, users can now scroll using the Automatic Clicks feature.
One place for all your media controls
I always have several tabs open and sometimes forget which one has media playing in it. With the new update, users can click on the bottom right of the screen to access media controls that give you control over any kind of media playing across your Chromebook.
Virtual Desks is similar to the Mission Control on macOS. Users can choose and group several windows and apps together for convenience. Virtual Desks give you a bird’s eye view of all your open apps and windows on the top portion of your screen and it is extremely easy to switch between spaces.
Add Screen Time easily with Family Link
The parental controls also get a slight bump with the new update allowing parents to add more screen time when it’s running out. This will be of use especially when your kids are behaving well and deserve some sort of recognition.
I know all these features are exciting, especially the new Virtual Desks and Google Assistant integration. Please note that all Chromebooks may not be eligible for the update as of now. It will be progressively rolling out and may take some time to reach you. Don’t worry! Comment below if you’ve already got the update and how the new features stack up against your expectations.