Google Confirms Chrome App Launcher to Retire in July

Google on Tuesday announced that it will soon kill its Chrome app launcher for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Confirming the news, Marc Pawliger, Engineering Director, in a blog post explained that while the app launcher helped easily open Chrome apps outside the browser, Google found that users on Windows, Mac, and Linux preferred to launch their apps from within Chrome.

“With Chrome’s continued emphasis on simplicity and streamlining browser features, the launcher will be removed from those platforms. It will remain unchanged on Chrome OS,” added Pawliger.

The removal process will take several months, and the company will be starting by removing the existing instances of the launcher in July. Starting in a few weeks, users will be no longer able to use the launcher when first installing the Chrome app. The company will soon inform anyone who currently has the launcher with a notice saying that the launcher will be going away.

Users can still access Chrome apps by clicking the apps shortcut in the bookmarks bar or typing chrome://apps in the omnibox.

Google stressed that the removal of Chrome App launcher is part of the company’s strategy to streamline browser features. Last year, Google removed the Chrome desktop notification centre saying that not many users visited the notification centre and some disabled it, which made the feature pointless. Google had also announced that it would stop supporting Chrome Web browser on older operating systems. It will discontinue support for Chrome on Windows XP, Windows Vista, and OS X 10.8 or lower versions after April 2016.

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