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Google is working on a speedy new way to close Chrome tabs with a mouse or keyboard

Published Feb 26th, 2023 3:10PM EST
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Most Google Chrome users know how to get rid of the tabs they don’t need. Tap the “X” in the top corner, and Chrome will close that tab immediately. If you know your keyboard shortcuts, then you can press CTRL+W to close the current tab as well. There’s a major incentive to ditch the tabs that you’re not using: Chrome uses a ton of resources while it’s running. The more tabs you have open, the worse your computer will perform.

Google has devised two new features to fix that problem, and Energy Saver and Memory Saver are rolling out more widely. But closing tabs in Chrome is something you can do right now to free up resources. And Google’s new trick will let you close those tabs even faster.

Using Google Chrome on a computer, regardless of the operating system, involves keyboard and mouse/trackpad operation. Windows laptops also have touchscreen displays, but you’re essentially relying on the keyboard and mouse to get the job done.

Any shortcut to close Google Chrome tabs faster should involve either the keyboard or the mouse. According to Android Police, a reader found evidence in the Chromium Gerrit that Google is working on a shortcut involving the mouse.

Double-clicking on a Chrome tab will close it, which is rather brilliant. It’s unclear when the feature will roll out, but it’s certainly the kind of Chrome shortcut that power users will appreciate.

Admittedly, if you’re hovering the mouse on a Chrome tab, you can press the “x” button and be done with it. You no longer have to worry about shortcuts involving the keyboard or the mouse. However, the double-click gesture means you can tap anywhere on a tab and close it.

If you’re the kind of Chrome user with dozens of tabs open, the gesture should help you clear them faster than ever. Also, if you’re working with dozens of tabs, you’ll want to ensure you enable the Energy and Memory Saver tools, especially on laptops.

Alternatively, you can switch browsers and forget about Chrome being a resource hog. If the browser stops using resources, then you won’t care about how many tabs you have open. And you won’t want ways to close them faster than it already is.

As for Google Chrome fans who can’t conceive of ditching the browser, there’s no way to enable the double-click mouse action at this time. You’ll have to wait for Google to enable it in a future release, so you’ll want to keep closing tabs via the “X” or CTRL+W shortcut.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

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