Chrome OS May Soon Use The Power Button Like Android

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On Chrome OS devices right now, locking the device requires holding down the power button for a bit, but evidence has popped up that shows that Chrome OS may adopt a more Android-like behavior in future versions where a quick click of the power button is enough to lock the device. Particularly, a number of reports are popping up that the behavior is hitting a number of convertible Chrome OS devices that are set to get their updates from the Beta channel. For now, owners of most convertible devices that make the switch are reporting that their power buttons are behaving like the ones found on phones, but there has thus far been no word on when this feature may end up in the stable channel and if it will only be convertibles, or if future Chrome OS tablets and current laptop-type Chromebooks will also get the modified power button behavior.

While reports are still scattered, Chrome OS devices that seem to have picked up the change in the beta channel so far include the likes of the Samsung Chromebook Plus, the Acer Chromebook R13, and the ASUS Chromebook Flip. While the trend seems to be that any Chrome OS convertible that can use tablet mode can simply switch on the Beta channel updates and get the new power button behavior, this obviously cannot be confirmed without official word from Google. A larger sample size of users reporting the change or a dive into the code repositories by somebody who knows what they're doing and can translate for the general public may also help to add veracity to these reports.

This is just the latest in a string of attempts by Google to make using Chrome OS devices as tablets a bit more bearable. Past efforts include things like the addition of Android's Immersive Mode to Chrome OS devices in tablet mode. Android integration, including Play Store support, is also improving by leaps and bounds with each iteration of Chrome OS. The timing for this move seems spot on, since code found in the Chrome OS repositories not long ago points to the possibility of the OS sporting out of the box support for not only convertible form factor devices, but also detachables and tablets at some point in the near future.

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