From laptops and desktops to foldable smartphones, people are hopping across more devices (and screen sizes) than ever. And that means the demand for cross-platform, cross-device experiences is sure to pick up steam in 2023. Predictions show the average number of devices and connections per person will rise globally this year, presenting devs with both a can’t-miss opportunity and a must-solve challenge.
You’ll have more potential for growth, but you’ll also need to meet increasing expectations from multi-device, cross-platform users. That’s why all of our updates and launches are focused on making ChromeOS a one-stop shop for devs to engage millions of people — no matter what you’re building, your programming environment, or who you’re building for.
As we kick off the new year together, let’s take a spin through the top 2022 highlights that will help you make the most of 2023.
We improved our software and hardware to enrich the ways people learn, work, and play. For starters, we launched tools such as Screencast and cast moderator that teachers can use to make classrooms more collaborative and interactive.
We also partnered with Figma to give schools in the U.S. free access to its design and prototyping platform on Chromebooks. With 50 million students and educators already on these devices, our partnership will enable even more young minds to explore software engineering and design and prepare them for future careers.
Enterprise Chromebooks got a revamp, too. We strengthened their core flexibility, security, and deployability and expanded Chrome Enterprise Recommended to 62 solutions across seven solution tracks — which include security and trust, virtualization, and contact centers.
These tailored solutions ensure organizations have access to validated apps and integrations built for ChromeOS users. For example, the recent release of ChromeOS for kiosks and digital signage has enabled seamless solutions for both customers and employees across a wide variety of industries. Whether it’s menu boards or check-in kiosks, ChromeOS helps organizations show up across touchpoints with the security and reliability they expect.
We expanded Chrome Enterprise Recommended to 62 solutions across seven solution tracks.
With the debut of ChromeOS Flex, we made it easier to minimize e-waste while improving security. Take Nordic Choice Hotels, for instance. The team overcame a ransomware attack in just two days by deploying ChromeOS Flex to over 2,000 computers across 200 hotels in five countries — an endeavor that could’ve taken months and would’ve been costly.
We expanded our suite of solutions and devices last year, with 35 software releases alongside new Chromebooks.
A particularly exciting addition is the Framework Laptop Chromebook Edition, the first modular Chromebook that lets you replace parts rather than the entire device. For consumers, this means a high-performance laptop to love for years. And for devs, the Framework Laptop Chromebook Edition presents a unique opportunity to open up the laptop completely and tinker with the hardware and OS.
Another dev favorite is the HP Elite Dragonfly, which runs Android Studio faster than ever and provides support for docks, external displays, and styluses. Other features unique to the device, such as its haptic trackpad, 5G support, and HDRnet AI-enhanced video conferencing, make the HP Elite Dragonfly easy to use — even when you’re on the go.
We also teamed up with Acer, ASUS, and Lenovo to introduce the world’s first laptops built for cloud gaming: the Acer Chromebook 516 GE, ASUS Chromebook Vibe CX55 Flip, and Lenovo Ideapad Gaming Chromebook. We worked with NVIDIA to deck out each laptop with support for the GeForce NOW Ultimate membership tier so gamers can stream titles at up to 1600p resolution on 120Hz+ high-resolution displays. And now that Steam beta is available on compatible Chromebooks, users have even more options for local gaming at their fingertips.
To help you get the most out of these powerhouse devices, we’ve been making ChromeOS a better, more secure platform. As we’ve been sharing in our Foundations series, we’ve got the embedded controller that supports Chromebooks’ all-day battery, enhanced security and password authentication, and better performance for core scheduling and Android Runtime.
When it comes to working toward gender equality, tech still has a long way to go. Thankfully, inspiring women devs such as Piper Co-Founder Shree Bose and Kapwing CEO and Co-Founder Julia Enthoven are paving the way.
We were lucky enough to chat with both Shree and Julia this past International Women’s Day to learn how they’re empowering more people to learn and create. For instance, Shree co-founded Piper to help students explore tech in a hands-on way. We partnered with Shree and her team to transform Piper Make, a browser-based prototyping platform, into a Progressive Web App (PWA) that helped them increase users by 38%.
Julia and her team at Kapwing, a content creation app, are dedicated to sharing easy-to-use tools for editing videos and generating memes. To make Kapwing even better to use, the team also launched a PWA — which contributed to 36% growth and has a higher seven-day retention rate and 28-day retention rate than its website by 1.9X and 2.85X, respectively.
2022 was an especially unforgettable year. We celebrated our 100th stable channel release with a refreshed look and feel for ChromeOS.dev. With new content tailored for enterprise and education devs, it’s now easier than ever to find everything you need to build apps on and for ChromeOS.
We also loved connecting with our community at industry events throughout the year. At Google I/O 2022, we unveiled improvements for unlocking more seamless app experiences — such as cloud storage integration and communication app streaming. We joined PWA Summit 2022 to share insights for building the future of web apps. And at Android Dev Summit 2022, we took a spin through what devs should keep in mind when optimizing for ChromeOS and larger screens.
Our latest tools for Android devs help put these insights to work. For instance, the Desktop Android Virtual Device in Android Studio lets you test Android apps in a larger-screen environment. The new and recently updated lint rules in Android Studio help you catch structural issues with your code that could hinder your app’s larger-screen experience. This makes building delightful experiences for ChromeOS even smoother. Other updates that elevate the dev experience include improvements to mouse, trackpad, and keyboard input support in Jetpack Compose. This provides better, easier-to-use support for these input methods in apps built with Compose.
Thanks to devs like you, our world of immersive, cross-platform apps has continued to grow. Simplifi by Quicken and Codecademy built powerful PWAs last year while LumaFusion and Tayasui Sketches optimized their experiences for larger screens to give creatives more room to play. By meeting people on ChromeOS, these dev teams were able to make sure their users could access their apps anytime, anywhere.
People crave more from their apps every year — more immersive experiences, more seamlessness across devices, and more intuitive interfaces. We’re always amazed by how devs constantly exceed these rising expectations in innovative and imaginative ways. So we can’t wait to explore all you build for ChromeOS in 2023.
We’re already working on new solutions and devices for your toolkit, which will come in handy whether you’re creating a web app or an Android game. To keep up with the latest, subscribe to our newsletter. In the meantime, keep checking ChromeOS.dev to pick up tech guidance straight from experts and the global dev community.