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Google Chrome gets a new look: Here are new features

Google Chrome undergoes a makeover, bidding farewell to the side panel button in favour of a new pinning feature for easier access to Bookmarks, Reading List, and History.

By: MD IJAJ KHAN
Updated on: Apr 14 2024, 14:23 IST
Google Chrome streamlines access to Bookmarks and more, swapping side panel button for pinning feature. (Unsplash)

Google is shaking up the way users interact with their Bookmarks, Reading List, and History columns on its Chrome browser with a sleek redesign. The familiar side panel button that once resided in the top-right corner, granting quick access to these features, has vanished from desktop Chrome.

In its place, Chrome users will now navigate through a revamped interface. Instead of relying on the side panel button, which resembles a square-ish icon, users will access most features through the Chrome menu, 9to5Google reported

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Enhanced Accessibility

Previously, the side panel button predominantly led to the Bookmarks section, with a dropdown menu offering access to other pages. However, with this update, the side panels themselves - including Reading List, Bookmarks, History, Reading Mode, and Search - remain accessible. The notable change is the ability to 'pin' preferred panels to a new partitioned section, ensuring immediate access. This behaviour mirrors the convenience of extensions present in today's Chrome setup.

To access Bookmarks and Reading List, users can navigate to the three-dot overflow menu > Bookmarks and Lists. Meanwhile, History (or "Grouped History") is located a few spots above, and Reading Mode can be launched via a right-click on a page.

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Transition from Button to Menu

The introduction of the side panel UI dates back to 2022, with gradual expansions to its capabilities, including the integration of Google Lens. Users are witnessing the removal of the side panel button with the rollout of Chrome 123 (stable) on Mac, Windows, and ChromeOS. This change is also influenced by a specific flag: chrome://flags/#side-panel-pinning.

In other news, Google seems to be brewing a nifty feature that could streamline user experience. This feature aims to allow users to deactivate all extensions simultaneously.

Also read: Alphabet to set a new record as investors happy with Google's AI progress

According to Gamer Stones, Google is tinkering with the Extension menu of its browser. Upon enabling a flag (chrome://flags/#extensions-menu-access-control) in version 125.0.6398.0, the outlet unearthed a new toggle in the menu. This toggle enables users to disable all active extensions with a single click, potentially proving handy when multiple extensions need deactivation for various reasons.

Furthermore, it appears that active extensions in the menu will sport individual toggles, offering users more precise control. These toggles seem to replace the pin icon, which previously allowed users to pin extensions to their toolbar.

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First Published Date: 13 Apr, 12:16 IST

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