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Google I/O 2022 Brings Cisco Webex Meetings PWA To Chrome OS

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Google and Webex by Cisco have a big announcement for remote workers at this year’s Google I/O 2022 Chrome keynote in the form of a Progressive Web Application (PWA). Specifically, that’s the Webex Meetings PWA for Chrome OS.

As with all PWAs, the Webex Meetings PWA is downloadable and acts as a full desktop app placed directly on a Chromebook’s shelf or launcher. But this PWA is a bit different too. Cisco designed it to work more like a native app than the web-based or Android versions that came before.

What’s new about the Webex Meetings PWA for Chrome OS?

Now, created in partnership with Google with improved hybrid work collaboration in mind, there are some pretty big differences between the new application and previous ones. Among the biggest differences in the new PWA for Webex Meetings, as noted at the event, is that it’s explicitly designed for Chrome OS. That’s as opposed to previous PWAs that were created with a more universal focus. And that has several implications.

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First, users can not only sign into the app for home use, school, or work to join meetings. They can also share videos and content, or record directly within the app. Additionally, advanced features such as real-time background noise removal and translations are in place. So users can collaborate more readily without relying on secondary tools or a website, directly for those purposes. And regardless of where they happen to be working from.

On a more collaborative, productivity-focused note, Webex Meetings PWA for Chrome OS works in its own window. And as its own app. So users don’t need to have it open in a Chrome tab.

While splitting a Webex Meeting off into its own window was already fairly easy, this makes that easier than ever. And that, in turn, helps users work across multiple tabs, tools, and windows without undue effort typically associated with browser tabs. Such as tab switching to access live documents, research, and other browser-based tools.

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That also reduces the chances, conversely, that the Webex meeting will go to sleep. Primarily, since Chrome tends to reallocate resources in the browser as needed as more tabs are opened and accessed.

This is better for IT admins, too

Webex Meetings PWA makes matters easier for hybrid work machines that are business-owned, too. Specifically, as that pertains to giving IT administrators more control over Webex Meetings PWA on managed Chrome OS devices. Not only does it allow pre-imaging and installation. IT admins and users can download the tool directly via the Google Play Store on Chromebooks as well. Removing the need to deal with a browser at all.