Chrome Remote Desktop isn’t exactly the most popular app Google ever made but it’s still a really convenient method of accessing your computers from your Android smartphone or tablet. It’s incredibly simple to set up: just download the app from Google Play Store and then proceed to download the accompanying Chrome app from the Chrome Web Store. Once that’s said and done, open the Android app and input your device ID and password to remote into any computer you own. The method is quick, simple, and reliable, just like a remote desktop solution should be. Better yet, the app is now more capable than ever.
Namely, Google has just started rolling out a new update version 53 which adds several useful features to Chrome Remote Desktop. The most important addition included in this iteration of the app is the remote sound support which means that you can now stream audio from your computer directly to your Android device of choice. This works for any audio or video file and first user reviews on the Play Store suggest that the quality of sound is actually almost identical to the one produced on the host device. Unfortunately, there still isn’t a simple way to control volume while streaming audio. In other words, you’re currently forced to use your Android client to navigate to desktop volume controls of the host device in order to adjust volume levels of whatever content you happen to be streaming. Still, it’s a step in the right direction and more convenient volume controls will hopefully be included in some future Chrome Remote Desktop update. Also, note that audio streaming is currently only supported on Windows and Linux devices while OS X support is expected to roll out at a later date.
Other than that, the latest version of Chrome Remote Desktop boasts a completely redesigned Help & Feedback screen and a couple of useful user interface features. More specifically, you can now remove any host device on your list by long-pressing its name on the device selection screen while pinch-to-zoom and two-finger scrolling gestures have been significantly improved and now feel much more responsive. All in all, it’s great that Google is still regularly updating Chrome Remote Desktop after turning it into a fully fledged app for Chrome last year.