Chrome for Android gets new features, facelift to the start page coming soon

August 24, 2013
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Google’s popular mobile browser is going to receive a redesigned start page, a hidden setting reveals. Other new features include image search and new gestures.

chrome gestures

For the majority of users of modern Android devices, Google’s Chrome is the browser of choice, so it’s good to see Google constantly tweaking the app and adding new features.

This week, Google announced that two small enhancements are heading to the stable version of Chrome for Android. The first is reverse image search: long press any image and select image search from the menu to be taken to a list of sites that display said image. This feature mirrors the functionality that is coming on Chrome for desktop. The second change is a new way to switch between tabs using gestures.

More interestingly, JR Raphael of Computerworld found a setting in the latest Chrome Beta that enables a redesigned start page. Just go to chrome://flags from the address bar and check the “Enable the New NTP” option in the settings. This should reveal a work-in-progress variant of the start page that always shows the Google search box, along with thumbnails for most visited pages, and links to Bookmarks and synced devices.

chrome-android-new-tab-page Computerworld

The new page is a major departure from the current design, which is, at least in my opinion, not very intuitive and ergonomic. We don’t know for now when will the redesign roll out, though it shouldn’t be long probably.

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