Yes, I know, I sound lazy. Anyone who knows me though will tell you that I prefer to work smarter, not harder. I’m a man of efficiency, what can I say? That’s why when I recently realized how annoying it was that Chrome OS didn’t have a ‘Clear all’ button to close active or open apps and web apps, I couldn’t stop thinking about it.
If you open the overview mode on your Android device and swipe all the way over to the left of your app cards, you’ll see such a button, and I often make use of it as I’m jumping between apps so often that I hardly ever close them. It’s more so that I prefer to keep them open in the background in case I want to revisit or complete a task.
On my Chromebook, I do the same thing, but just as with my phone, I often get the urge to just nuke all of my open apps and tabs to clear my mind and start fresh (Funny thought – if asked to organize a bookshelf, I’d prefer to tear all of the books off and start from scratch over moving one book at a time). Going through each and every one to make an individual determination on whether or not I want to close it is time-consuming, and I can’t understand why Google has yet to add such a feature to its laptop operating system.
More specifically, I wonder why it’s not a feature for Chrome OS tablet owners! I can confidently say that I open and navigate between way more progressive web apps and Android apps on my Lenovo Chromebook Duet than I do on my clamshell devices like the Pixelbook Go, and they add up pretty quickly. Add to that the fact that such tablet devices like the aforementioned Duet become laggy fairly quickly with just a few open windows, and you can see why I year for such a simple button.
As a funny contradiction to needing ‘Clear all’ on a tablet-style device, I actually think it would be more useful to mouse and keyboard users on standard Chromebooks. Swiping away each open window can be very quick, but for anyone aiming at that tiny, little “x” at the top right corner of open apps using a non-touchscreen display, you’ll know how annoying it is to close a bunch of stuff consecutively.
Anyway, that’s my “why-the-heck-doesn’t-chrome-os-have-this-feature” rant for the day. Most people will likely not care one little bit about such a seemingly insignificant option as they probably have just a few things open at a time, but for those, like me, who use Chrome OS daily and try to get the most out of it, it could make or break the experience of managing RAM and their sanity alike.