Proper Display Scaling Likely Coming to Chrome OS in Chrome 65

With the release of the third build of Chrome 65 into the Chrome OS Dev channel, a new feature has popped up in settings that has big and positive implications for those who use their Chromebooks connected to an external monitor.  The new settings is enabled with a flag setting, chrome://flags/#enable-display-zoom-setting which enables the ability to change how scaling is done on external monitors.

Currently with a Chromebook, if you connect it to an external monitor, especially a high resolution monitor, you end up with having to scale the display to be able to read everything.  Usually this is 125% of normal to make things bigger and readable.  Doing this effectively changes the resolution to something lower, thus you lose screen real estate.

This new setting should resolve this issue and make it to where you have a more “normal” feel to things when you are using an external monitor.

As previously discussed, the Dev channel is more-or-less the Alpha channel for Chrome OS so it will likely be another few months before we see this come to the stable channel either as a flag setting or a built-in setting.  Either way, it is a positive step for the platform as it gains traction in the enterprise space where external monitors are often in play.

Finally, if you are tempted to move to the Dev channel for this feature, my suggestion would be to wait.  While you may gain this feature, you may also pick up a lot of bugs and weird behavior.  It is “Dev” after all.