I’ll file this under things I’ve never considered wanting, but am still very glad to see in the works. Apparently, there are users out there who use PDFs in presentations and do so with enough regularity that the Chrome team is hard at work on implementing a new PDF viewer option for what is simply being called presentation mode. The idea is simple enough, I suppose, and this new feature is going to have all sorts of tools for users that want to offer up hardwired or cast-enabled presentations on a big screen.
From the commit shown above, presentation mode for the Chrome PDF viewer will handle the sorts of navigation and zooming controls you want for basic presentations while disabling the parts you really don’t need. Getting rid of scroll bars, accidental pinch-zooming, and forcing content to fill the screen as much as possible are all things you need when flipping through items during a meeting.
From the looks of things, they are still working out kinks with extra zooming functions like CTRL+/- and rotation with CTRL+[ or ], however, so there is work to be done still. From what we can tell, most of the changes around this feature are already merged, so we’re likely not too far out on this addition to the PDF viewer in Chrome.
Once the kinks are all worked out and this becomes a regular part of the upgraded PDF viewer for Chrome, I could see this being a very handy tool for in-person meetings on an external screen and more near-term as a way for users to show page-by-page presentations of PDFs in virtual meetings like Zoom or Google Meet. Love them or hate them, PDFs are an important part of our digital usage these days. They already provide a great way to send read-only documents that are rich in graphics to other users, and it looks like they’ll be easier to use as presentation slides via Chrome in the near future.