Chrome OS gets Google Now and Material Design

Google has rolled out a beta of its Chrome OS software that includes a new launcher with Google Now. In addition, the operating system is provided with the Material Design appearance.

Until now, Chrome OS’s launcher resembled a start menu at the bottom left of the screen, but in the new beta of the software, Google has introduced Chrome Launcher 2.0. This consists of a search screen in the middle of the desktop and below it shows a short list of frequently used apps, with a button to see the other apps. Below that are the Google Now cards that show personalized information to the user.

Google Now is already part of Android and the Chrome browser, but the personal assistance service is now also making its appearance in Chrome OS. In addition, the beta update brings Material Design to the OS. This is the design that is also at the basis of Android 5. With Chrome OS, the new look is visible in the file manager and more apps will follow soon.

Finally, the test version of Chrome OS now supports password-protected zip files and the software automatically adjusts the time zone depending on where the user is in the world.