The feature most responsible for removing friction in my Android phone experience is Fast Pair. Being able to connect my Bluetooth earbuds, specifically, the Pixel Buds to my phone with just one tap after they’re automatically detected is so incredibly useful that I can’t even imagine what I did before it. Obviously, I connected them manually, but as you can see, I’ve chosen to forget such hassle.
Discovered by Android Police, Fast Pair is now coming to your Chromebook via a developer flag! Should things pan out, it will eventually come to all users as a stable channel feature, but soon, you’ll be able to pair up your buds after they appear in your quick settings notification tray the instant you open their case.
[FastPair] Add Fast Pair feature flag
This CL adds a base::Feature flag for Fast Pair.Chromium Repository
We do not want to add this flag to the UI yet because the feature is still in early development.
Fast Pair isn’t limited to earbuds though – it also works with mice, keyboards, and more! Chrome OS will seek these nearby devices out with BLE, or Bluetooth Low Energy signals. Let’s say for example that you often travel with a miniature-sized keyboard, or you just bought a new peripheral from Best Buy – instead of going to the Bluetooth menu and scrolling through many, many, (many) nearby devices that may or may not be relevant to you just to find that specific one, you’ll instead be prompted to connect it the moment it’s found!
I can’t remember what it was called, but a long time ago, Chrome OS implemented a special seeking trick that would only list out nearby Bluetooth devices that were closest to you, thus eliminating most of the noise around you from the list. However, a notification is a much better and cleaner way of getting everything connected without a problem, and I can’t wait to try it out.