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Image credit: Cherlynn Low/Engadget

Latest Chrome OS update includes a redesigned tablet interface

The new design isn't just for the Pixel Slate.
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Cherlynn Low/Engadget

You won't need a Pixel Slate to use a more touch-oriented version of Chrome OS. Google has released an update (version 70) that brings the Slate's interface changes to all touchscreen Chrome OS PCs and tablets. There's a more finger-friendly app shelf with contextual menus, an overhauled control panel with faster access to common features (plus a unified notifications feed) and a launcher that shows recent sites. you'll also find a Gboard-based on-screen keyboard with an option to float a small keyboard if you'd rather type with one thumb.

There are some valuable under-the-hood changes, too. Chrome OS now has native support for SMB file sharing, so it should behave much more nicely around networked storage. You'll also see playback for the brand new AV1 video format on Intel-based machines, and controls that let you decide when Chrome Extensions are allowed to run. If you're particularly security-conscious, you'll be glad to hear that Chrome OS now warns you when you enter personal data on non-HTTPS websites.

As with many Chrome OS updates, this should roll out to devices over the "next several days."

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