Google recently made several improvements to Chromebooks. Today, new file transfer and file sharing features appear in the Chrome OS 103 update.
Chrome OS already has a “Phone Hub” feature, which can connect to an Android phone and provide access to certain apps and services on the phone (such as app streaming and a hotspot toggle) . Google started testing a Recent Photos section of Phone Hub back in May, and now it’s available to everyone.
In a blog post, Google explains that after taking a photo on your phone, it will automatically appear in Phone Hub on your laptop under “recent photos”. Just click on the image to download it, then it’s ready to add to a document or email. This should reduce the number of times you might need to email a file to yourself, or upload a few files to cloud storage just to download them to a single computer.
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Sharing “home WiFi” with a Chromebook using Nearby Share
Google is also adding the ability to send a Wi-Fi network from an Android phone to a Chromebook, including the password, using the same Nearby Sharing feature that already works for file transfers. This makes it easy to connect a Chromebook to a network your phone has already joined, especially if you tend to forget passwords.
Chromebooks have delivered many other new features over the past few months. Earlier this month, Google then launched a “Screencast” app that adds new screen recording features to Chromebooks, including the ability to draw over a recording and add a voiceover. There’s also a new Cursive app for handwritten notes, on Chromebooks with stylus support.
The new features are rolling out now to all Chromebooks. You can wait for your Chromebook to install the latest Chrome OS update, or manually check for an update and install it (if available).