With more Chromebooks sporting touchscreens and even stylus support, like Samsung’s latest Chromebook Pro, it’s not surprising to see a touch-friendly launcher arrive for Chrome OS.
Note that this refreshed launcher is still in the experimental playing-around-with-it stage at this point and only present in the Canary channel (which is the test bed for new Chrome OS features).
As the YouTube video below shows, the launcher nestles at the bottom of the screen, showing just a small collection of suggested apps and a search bar. Users can swipe up to reveal the full bank of app icons. You also get the ability to trigger a voice search with a simple tap of the finger.
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A touch early
Some of the commenting developers aren’t too impressed with the aesthetics of the launcher as it stands, but it’s still very early days – plus bear in mind that it will doubtless be pretty rough around the edges and glitch-filled, given that the feature is just making its debut in Canary.
Still, even if you’ve no intention of using it yet, it’s very definitely an interesting insight into the direction Google is heading here, and owners of touchscreen Chromebooks can only hope that progress down this particular avenue turns out to be swift.
Of course, Google is also busy implementing support for Android apps across Chromebooks, and all of the Chrome OS-toting laptops that launch this year will have this facility built in right out of the box.
Google has to keep its Chromebooks more competitive now that Microsoft has unleashed Windows 10 S, which aims to be a big hit in the education market – the cheap-and-cheerful territory where Google dominates.
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