Google has announced it is killing off its Chrome app launcher.
The feature, which despite being little known is arguably one of Chrome’s most useful, especially for people who tend to regularly use multiple Google products such as Gmail, Drive, Google, Sheets, Docs and YouTube.
The Chrome app launcher sits outside the web browser and can be added the taskbar or desktop on a Windows PC or laptop or to the launcher on Mac.
It enables users to open Gmail and Google services without having to go into the browser first.
However, Google has said that it believes users actually prefer to access these browser apps through the browser.
Announcing the move on the Google Chrome blog, Google’s Marc Pawlinger wrote: “With Chrome’s continued emphasis on simplicity and streamlining browser features, the launcher will be removed from [Windows, Mac and Linux.]”
Retiring the app launcher will take place over a couple of months. Initially people who download the Chrome will no longer get the option to install the app, whereas existing users will be notified that the feature will be disappearing by the end of July.
A feature similar to the launcher will still be available via the bookmark bar in Chrome and it will still be included on devices running the Chrome OS as it is the key feature of the whole operating system.
Google’s web browser has an array of useful add ons via Chrome extensions, which bring new features and functionality to the browser.
However, some users claim that they slow the browser down and impact on performance.