The touch enablement of Chrome OS continues, as well as the merging of look-and-feel elements between it and Android. The latest example is in the Chrome OS Canary Channel, the pre-alpha builds of the platform, where you will now find the Power menu to look strikingly similar to its Android counterpart.
The new came from long time Chrome OS evangelist François Beaufort who posted about the find on Google+. If you are a fan of Chrome OS, Francois is one you need to follow as he is great at finding these little nuggets, especially in the Canary Channel.
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A new commit in the Chrome OS Gerrit points to the floating virtual keyboard being enabled by default when you enter into tablet mode on your compatible Chromebook. The feature leverages existing flags that you can find in the Stable Channel today, but this commit make the default behavior change.
Today, if you go chrome://flags/#enable-floating-virtual-keyboard you can enable the floating virtual keyboard on your Chromebook. Then, when you go into tablet mode, the keyboard can be moved from fixed to floating using the overflow menu (the three vertical dots). You’ll also find several other virtual keyboard flags to play with if you do a search for “virtual keyboard” on the flags page.
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We are only two months into 2018 but it is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Chrome OS. This year is slated to be a busy one with 8 releases of the platform scheduled to happen this calendar year. One of those, Chrome 64, has already happened but by the time we get to December, we will be rolling out Chrome 71 believe it or not.
The Chromium team has put together a tentative schedule of releases for Chrome OS for 2018. While the calendar is subject to change due to unforeseen bugs or other issues, last year the team was pretty much on target all year with releases. It is a reasonable bet that 2018 will follow suite.
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