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Chrome OS Gains Improved Tethering, Android Support, More

Posted May 1, 2018 | Chrome OS | Chromebook | Mobile | Windows

Google this past week announced the release of Chrome OS 66, which adds improvements to the system’s instant tethering support, Android app capabilities, and more.

“The Stable channel has been updated to 66.0.3359.137 (Platform version: 10452.74.0) for most Chrome OS devices,” the Google announcement notes. “This build contains a number of bug fixes and security updates.”

A few functional changes stand out.

First, Chrome OS’s instant tethering feature—called Magic Tether, I assume so Apple can’t use the name—has been extended to support more devices. This feature debuted first on Android. It lets a Chromebook or other Chrome OS device activate and then connect to a phone’s hotspot automatically. There’s no word on which devices are now supported, but this previously worked with Google-branded Pixel and Nexus handsets.

On the Android front, Chrome OS 66 adds screen sharing support for mobile apps, improvements to how maximized app windows work, and native printing support. There is also an opt-out choice on first login windows in apps and support for GDPR.

Here’s Google’s full list of the improvements in this release.

  • Adding new keyboard shortcut to move windows from display-to-display
  • New Chrome OS Keyboard Shortcut Helper
  • External Display Settings enhancements
  • Enable Video Recording in Chrome Camera App
  • Overview window animation improvements
  • Extending more devices support for Magic Tether
  • Picture in Picture Magnification
  • Ability to zoom up to 20x with Chrome OS magnifier
  • Ability to adjust full screen mag zoom level through pinch gesture
  • Screen sharing support for Android apps installed via the Google Play Store
  • Add Google Play into first login Opt-in window
  • Google Play GDPR support
  • Google Play Maximized Window support improvements
  • Automatically pass user credentials from Chrome OS login to network 802.1x authentication
  • Native printing support extended to Google Play applications
  • Add Sync notice during initial sign-in
  • Security fixes, including a final mitigation for Meltdown. Google notes that all Chrome OS devices are now protected against Meltdown.


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