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Google is testing a new feature on Chrome that we desperately need

Published Apr 14th, 2021 9:24PM EDT
Google Chrome new feature
Image: Google

There are many reasons that Google Chrome is the most popular browser in the world, but one of the reasons is that it simplifies the browsing experience in ways that many of its competitors don’t. The latest example of this is a totally new feature that is currently being tested in the Chrome Canary browser that should make it easier to reopen tabs that you might have accidentally closed before you were done with them.

Google’s Chrome Canary browser is sort of a testing ground for new features and functionality before they reach the main browser. Not all of them will see the light of day, but many do, such as the new “Search Tabs” button that recently rolled out to everyone in an update. If you missed it, the new button now appears just to the left of the minimize button at the top of the browser, allowing you to see all of the tabs that you have open and search through them for a certain tab. In Canary, that menu now also includes a list of your recently closed tabs.

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This feature isn’t going to change anyone’s life, but having the ability to quickly scroll through all of your open tabs as well as all of the tabs you’ve recently closed in a single menu will be incredibly useful to people like me and everyone I work with that spends all day switching from one tab to another for work. Better yet, I’ll be able to quickly search for the tab I need even if it’s no longer open, which should make chaotic days less frustrating.

It’s worth noting that you can already open previously closed tabs on Chrome with the following shortcut: Ctrl + Shift + T on Windows or CMD + Shift + T on Mac. If you hold down the first two buttons, you can hit “T” repeatedly to open closed tabs in reverse chronological order, but if you’re looking for a tab that you closed half an hour ago, you might be at it for a while before you finally find the one you wanted to reopen.

This new feature simplifies the process considerably, and although there’s no guarantee that it will make its way from Canary to Chrome proper, it seems like a clear winner. That said, it probably still needs some tweaking, as Android Police points out that there’s no way to clear the recently closed tabs from the list. You can close open tabs from the “Search Tabs” menu, but there’s no way to tidy up the list of tabs you’ve closed.

If you want to try out the feature now, you can download version 91.0.4472.0 of Chrome Canary from Google’s website. Just remember that this is an unstable version of the browser that is updated constantly.

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Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.