Files App in Chrome OS Canary Channel Showing Android App Files

The alchemy melding of Chrome OS and Android show no real signs of letting up and the latest example that is in the Chrome OS Canary Channel may be one of the most useful yet.  In the Canary Channel, when you open up the Files app to view files, you will now also see Android app related files with an appropriate flag enabled.  It means, for the first time, you can actually see the files associated with Android apps on your Chromebook all in one place.

The flag is -show-android-files-in-files-app and right now, it is only in the Canary Channel.  That means, roughly, that it is based in Chrome 69 which isn’t due out until September 11th of this year.  In other words, we’ve got a ways to go but the fact it is there is great news.  If you want to read the code commit, you can do that here.

For those new to Chrome OS, the Chrome OS Canary Channel is what would be considered pre-alpha code.  It is really, really rough in places and is prone to crashes and not working at all in some places.  Indeed, to get to the Channel you have to essentially jailbreak your Chromebook and bypass all of the security mechanisms in place in Chrome OS to get around it.

Based on early reports, the feature is working however when the flag is enabled.  That’s good.  It means that the feature is likely already pretty stable and that could mean it gets fast tracked into Chrome 67 or 68 – maybe.  Don’t get your hopes up too high just yet but if you happen to have one of your Chromebooks in the Chrome OS Dev Channel (the alpha build channel), you may want to check for the flag now or wait until the next build (due later this week) to see if it has the flag.