Google has put a lot of work into the new Chromebook Phone Hub so recently. Pictures you have taken on your phone start appearing there to users instantly, it will soon drain the phone battery less quickly by making less frequent pings and more. Despite the fact that three very important things should have been resolved before the release, I’m still happy to see Phone Hub available to users.
To promote the benefit, Google is now working to show your recently used phone apps in the Hub for quick access. First discovered by Chrome Story, a new Chrome development flag directly shows that restarting ̵
Add Feature Flag: PhoneHubRecentApps
This flag Enables the Recent Apps feature in the Phone Hub, which allows users to restart the streamed app.
As of now on Chrome OS Canary, the Phone Hub does not show the phone’s recently used apps, but it’s just a matter of time until the feature works with the flag enabled. Near the bottom of the hub, there are four “Continue browsing” tiles where the recently closed Chrome mobile tabs will appear. Dinsan from Chrome Story believes that apps will appear on these tiles instead of websites, and I’m inclined to agree. Check out his picture below to get an idea of what I mean.
If you open an application on your phone, it should reappear in the hub for easy access again. I guess this is what the commitment means with ‘Streamed’ apps. It is an interesting term to use for Phone Hub, and we still have to see this word used in reference to it. I’m starting to wonder if Google has bigger plans to deliver app experiences and information to users than it has implemented here, but maybe it’s just a generic word to transfer this experience to the laptop over the cloud via a standard sync.
If app streaming is about to be on some level, it could solve the issue of “double alerts” we are currently experiencing with Phone Hub (having to reject your alerts on your phone and Chromebook instead of doing it in one place and see it disappear from others automatically). Let me know in the comments what you think about all this as I’m interested in speculating on this with all of you!