Chrome 74 Reduces Motion Sickness, Goes Dark

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The latest beta builds for Google Chrome version 74 is now rolling out, aimed at helping users who suffer from motion sickness when viewing parallax scrolling, zooming, and other motion effects, according to a recently reported Google Chromium blog update. The change affects CSS preferences and refers back to system-level settings on a given platform.

That means that users who already have those features enabled for their OS will see the change immediately once it lands on the Stable Channels of Chrome — or in Chrome Beta if they happen to be using that variant already. Google provides an example of accessibility features in Android that allow users to access those settings and turn off animations. After the update to the latest build of Chrome 74, websites utilizing CSS for animations will honor those settings.

The same change will apply across any OS where motion settings can be changed at the OS level.

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Dark mode and other features in Chrome 74

Dark mode for Windows users is also making an appearance in the latest Beta build, signaling that it will soon be ready for Stable Channel users as well. In effect, that means users on Windows 10 systems can now change their system-level theme settings to enable dark mode and see that in effect in Chrome as well.

To accomplish the switch, users will need to navigate to settings and specifically the system preferences menu. Under "Colors", switching the preferred app mode to "Dark" or "Light" will automatically enact the same change in Chrome. That will apply to the URL bar — Omnibox — open tabs, the bookmarks bar, the new tab page itself, and to Chrome's menus.

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Although the change catches Chrome on Windows up in terms of features spotted in Chrome 73's Stable Channel release — with regard to macOS systems and dark mode — it doesn't go any further than that. Summarily, it doesn't appear to apply dark mode to the page contents just yet. There's also no word on when Linux and Chrome OS will see the change, although setting flags have also recently been spotted in Android versions of the browser.

Another change spotted in the Chrome browser with version 74 is a tweak to the Omnibox auto-suggestions that will highlight recent searches and apps before a user even begins to type. Shape Detection API is activated behind a flag setting in Chrome 74 too, allowing the browser to recognize faces, barcodes, and other shapes such as text that's contained in images.

Lastly, Chrome 74 starts wrapping up features that prevent pages from abusing visitors by throwing up pop-ups when a page is being exited or redirected to another site or page.

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When does Chrome 74 land in Stable?

Chrome 73 only recently began rolling out to users on Chrome OS, Linux, Windows, Android, and macOS as of March 12. The search giant ordinarily takes an extra week or so before the changes begin to land on Chrome OS and Android specifically, so there's still some time remaining before Chrome 74 starts rolling out to consumer-ready channels.

For now, that's scheduled to start on desktop platforms as of April 23. While there's no guarantee any of the new features outlined here will be finished and ready to go when that launch happens, the recently spotted features do appear close to finalization. So most of them should appear for every user once the updates are finished being tested.

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