The Stable channel for Chrome OS has been updated to 72.0.3626.97. The update should start showing up for some Chrome OS devices in the next few days. Android Pie and Google Assistant are both included in this build but not all Chromebooks are created equal. With this update, some will be updated to Pie and some will not get Google Assistant. This build contains bug fixes, some security updates, and a number of new features. Here are some of the newest features.

New Features

  • Google Assistant now available through hot word or SEARCH+A
  • Chrome browser has been optimized for touchscreen devices in tablet mode
  • External storage access for Android apps using direct /storage and MediaStore APIs
  • App shortcuts for Android apps are now searchable in the launcher. Users can find an app shortcut by long pressing or right-clicking on an Android app.
  • Policies added to manage print job attributes for native printing including simple/duplex printing and color/B&W printing
  • Picture in Picture (PiP) now available for Chrome sites
  • Within the ChromeVox screen reader, added a setting in the ChromeVox options page to read anything under the mouse cursor
  • Files saved via Backup and Sync on Drive now available in the Files app under My Drive/Computers

Security Improvements

  • Shill, the network manager for Chrome OS, has been put in a sandbox and no longer runs as the root user on the system. This security hardening measure helps protect users in the case of networking-related security vulnerabilities, such as one that resulted in persistent device compromise in 2016.

If you running the Dev or Beta channel you may have already run into some of these features. I can say adding Google Assistant is a welcomed update. As Chromebooks pull more and more features from their Android counterpart it will only make them better.

Chrome OS 72 Update

by Rami Hollingsworth time to read: 1 min