Google Chrome marches on with new releases every four weeks. Version 93 of the popular browser includes features for progressive web apps and new theme support for Android 12 devices. It arrived on August 31, 2021. Read on to learn more about what Chrome 93 brings.
Links Can Open Web Apps
Chrome 93 is testing a feature that will make progressive web apps (PWAs) feel a lot more like native desktop apps. Developers can declare web apps as “URL handlers.”
This means that when you click a link, it can open an associated web app. The same feature is what allows a Zoom invite link to open the Zoom app on your PC. It’s another little thing that makes web apps feel more like their own full-fledged app.
At this time, you can enable the feature with the Chrome flag found at
RELATED: What Are Progressive Web Apps?
Mult-Screen Support for Web Apps
Another feature in the works with Chrome 93 is improved multi-screen support for web apps. A new API gives developers the option to allow their apps to place windows in specific locations on multi-screen devices.
This also comes in handy for apps that contain multiple windows. For example, Google mentions the GIMP image editing web app, which has an interface that can contain multiple toolbox windows. It will be up to developers to support the API.
“Material You” Theme for Android 12
Android 12 introduces a dynamic theming system called “Material You.” It creates a theme for the entire phone’s UI based on your wallpaper. Chrome 93 now supports the Material You theme.
You can see the theme color reflected in the Chrome status bar, Tabs page, and Settings. At the time of writing, this feature is behind a Chrome flag at
chrome://flags#dynamic-color-android , but we expect it to be added to stable for the Android 12 release.
RELATED: How to Change the Theme Color on Android
Chrome for Android Tests New Google Search UI
Chrome 93 for Android continues work on a new Google Search UI. As we covered in our previous guide, the search results appear in a top bar as you navigate to the resulting websites.
Not a lot has changed since it was released behind a Chrome flag in version 91. The UI has been cleaned up a bit and it’s working a little better now. Check out our guide to seeing search results in the top bar if you’d like to give it a try now.
RELATED: How to See Google Search Results in the Top Bar of Chrome on Android
Sync Two-Factor OTP Codes Across Devices
If you use two-factor authentication for your online accounts—and you definitely should—Chrome 93 is making the sign-in process easier. For those who use SMS for authentication, Chrome can sync the code from your phone to the desktop browser.
SMS is not the best thing to use for two-factor authentication, but it’s better than nothing. This feature works if you’re signed in to Chrome with the same Google account on both devices. It also relies on developers to implement, so don’t expect to see it everywhere any time soon.
You can try this feature right now on this demo website.
RELATED: Why You Shouldn't Use SMS for Two-Factor Authentication (and What to Use Instead)
What Else Is New?
Chrome releases are picking up, which means the consumer-facing features aren’t as noticeable. There’s still a lot under the surface, though. You can read about many of these changes on Google’s developer site as well as on the Chromium blog. We’ll highlight a few changes here:
- You can now view and edit CSS container queries in the “Styles” panel.
- Web bundle content can be previewed in the “Network” panel.
- The “Lighthouse” panel is now running Lighthouse 8.1.
- JSON responses can now be pretty-printed from the “Network” panel.
How to Get the Update
Chrome will automatically install the update on your device when it’s available. To immediately check for and install any available updates, click the three-dot menu icon, and then click Help > About Google Chrome.
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