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Chrome OS update gets Nearby Share, Phone Hub and more on its tenth anniversary

Google is giving Chrome OS new features such as Nearby Share, Phone Hub, new refreshed icons, and more on its tenth anniversary.

Chrome OS update

Google’s Chrome OS is celebrating its tenth anniversary and with that, it gets a couple of new features. All of Google’s focus is now aimed at improving how Android devices “talk” to a Chrome OS device and how the resources are shared. The update will hit all Chrome OS devices in the next few weeks and should theoretically improve the user experience. Also Read - Google Chrome OS 88 released with personalized lock screen, faster web sign-in

One of the biggest features to help Chrome OS users in terms of sharing files between devices is Nearby Share. Making an appearance earlier on Android 11, Nearby Share is Google’s answer to Apple’s AirDrop. On a Chrome OS laptop, Nearby Share will let users easily share files and data between Android devices seamlessly without going through endless menus. Also Read - Intel announces 11th Gen Tiger Lake processors for Chromebooks

Chrome OS update brings better multitasking features

Google is also bringing Wi-Fi Sync to Chrome OS. This will basically allow Android users to share the credentials of a Wi-Fi network to a Chrome OS device without the hassles of inputting passwords. Another feature to help with improving the ecosystem experience is Phone Hub, which allows the user to control his/her phone from the laptop. Also Read - Lenovo launches 11-inch Chromebook 3

HP Chromebook x360

Image: HP Chromebook x360

Phone Hub will allow users to control hotspot connections, ringing mode, and remotely locate the phone from the Chrome OS device. One can also keep an eye on the battery level, signal strength, and recently opened web pages on the Chrome browser.

Users will also see improvements in the way they capture screenshots. All of the screenshots and screen recordings will show up in Tote, which can be accessed via the Quick Settings menu. The Clipboard has also improved as well and will now show you five copied items. App icons will also get a major upgrade.

Chromebook laptops in India

While Chrome OS has got a foothold in the US market for the student notebook crowd, it has struggled to do in markets like India. HP is the only brand selling Chrome OS laptops in the sub-Rs 50,000 segment. The HP Chromebook 14a is the cheapest Chrome OS device you can buy in India right now. The HP Chromebook x360 starts at Rs 44,990 and offers the convenience of a convertible laptop.

Prices on Chromebooks are definitely not as cheap as their US counterparts. Moreover, there are cheaper and more capable Windows laptops available in India. Xiaomi’s Mi Notebook 14 e-Learning Edition is currently a good Chromebook alternative at a price of Rs 36,999, compete with a 1080p display, 256GB SSD storage, 8GB RAM, and offering closer to 10 hours of battery life.

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  • Published Date: March 10, 2021 2:30 PM IST



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