Chrome OS M88 update adds two features you’ll wonder how you did without

Eric Abent - Jan 26, 2021, 3:15pm CST
Chrome OS M88 update adds two features you’ll wonder how you did without

Google is shipping out some new ease-of-use features to Chrome OS today, and they’re specifically targeted at making Chromebook usage as “seamless” as possible. There are two big features packed in today’s Chrome OS update: new website login options that can use your Chrome login credentials, and new customizable lock screens that can give Chrome OS devices a more personalized feel.

Those new login options might be the most exciting feature included in this update, as they now allow you to log into certain sites with the PIN or fingerprint you use to unlock your Chrome OS device. Though Chrome already makes a habit of asking users if they’d like to store login information for pretty much any website they visit, the idea behind this roll out is to allow users to use their PIN or fingerprint instead of their passwords when logging into certain sites online.

When you visit a website that supports Google’s Web Authentication – otherwise known as WebAuthn – that website will let you log in using your Chromebook’s fingerprint reader (if it has one) or PIN, and you can even use those unlock methods as two-factor authentication methods for websites that both require 2FA and use WebAuthn. Google lists a few websites that support WebAuthn like Dropbox, GitHub, and Okta, though we imagine the full list is quite a bit longer.

Then we come to the new customizable lock screens for Chrome OS devices. This is a pretty straightforward feature in that it allows you to select images you want displayed on your lock screen – whether that’s one of the art gallery images Google itself provides or if its an entire album from your Google Photos collection. You can also have your device surface weather information and even music playback controls.

That’s all Google revealed today, but the company promises that it will have more features coming to Chrome OS in March. We’ll let you know when details about that update are revealed, but otherwise, download this new Chrome OS release and try out your Chromebook’s new WebAuthn feature.


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