As Google had promised, it has finally brought the Google Play Store to its Chrome OS with the latest update.
The Chromebooks which are running the latest stable channel build will now have access to the Android games, media content, and Android apps that are available at the Google Play Store.
Earlier this month, Google had brought its Chrome OS 53 version 53.0.2785.103 to a stable channel, but it did not do much to the expected to offer support for the Android apps with the release. Now the internet search giant has brought Google Play to the stable channel of Chrome OS 53 version 53.0.2785.103 with a beta update.
Chromebooks and their Google Chrome Updates
Although the updates are available for the Chromebooks, it does not mean that all the Chromebook users can access the store. Google is taking it as a gradual roll-out at the stable channel, by limiting the launch in many ways.
Google had confirmed on its release page that the recent stable channel updated release was as of now meant only for the Asus Chromebook Flip and for the Acer Chromebook R11. It also mentioned the details about the availability of Google Play in its beta version. The Chromebook Pixel that was released in 2015 was not on the list. This obviously raised a few eyebrows since it was these three devices that had received support for Google Play and Android app in the beta channel.
A Google spokesperson reported to Venture Beat that the Chromebook Pixel (2015) would also be receiving an update very soon. The report mentioned that a beta release of the Google Play Store is available right now for the users on the Asus Flip and the Acer R11, and will be coming soon to Pixel 2015. The beta version can be enabled on these laptops from the Settings page. HP Chromebox CB1, and the Acer C7 Chromebook, along with the Acer R11, Asus Flip, and Pixel 2015 laptops were the only devices which did not get updated with the last stable channel of Google Chrome.
It is important to note that Google Play has been disabled by default and with the latest update, it should be manually enabled from the Chrome Settings. Furthermore, it still carries the Beta tag irrespective of whether it is in the stable channel or not.
Chrome OS basically has three channels. The first Dev channel carries the unstable features and improvements, followed by the Beta channel which has comparatively fewer bugs and it finally arrives at the Stable channel. Google had first announced in May at the I/O developers conference that Google Play will be coming to the Chrome OS. Earlier in June, Google Play had made it to the Dev channel of Google Chrome OS and in August, it made its way to the Beta channel. Now it has finally made it to the stable channel of Chrome OS.
Other New Updates of the Google Chrome version 53.0.2785.129
The updated Google Chrome version 53.0.2785.129 brings with it a lot of bug fixes, feature enhancements, and security updates, in addition to the small update of the version.
Chrome OS 53 also added an Overview mode, which will allow the users to see all their open tabs with a shortcut key or with a swipe of three fingers on the laptop’s trackpad. The latest update also brought Material Design Layout to its build. Google also added new APIs to the updated Chrome OS 53 version, which will allow the users to enable the watchdog timers for all the kiosk apps, which utilize full-screen modes on the Chromebooks.
The stability of the apps and the games has improved a lot since it was played with Google Play on the Dev channel of the Chrome OS. But still, there is a long way to go and probably that is the reason why Google is going at a snail’s pace when it has finally managed to pull off one of its massive integrations.
As of now, it is still not clear when Google will render the Android app support and grant Google Play access to the other worthy Chrome OS devices.