Back in early October we covered the arrival of a big, new feature for Chromebooks: native screen recording and capture. While screen captures have been a thing on Chromebooks for quite some time, there’s never really been any UI involved and the process was about as bare-bones as you can get. With no real screenshot button and no video abilities, I’d say there have been a ton of users in the dark on how to go about capturing both screenshots and screen recordings on Chromebooks.
That’s all about to change in a pretty fundamental way with the arrival of Chrome OS 88 (currently in Beta) as this version of the OS will usher in the brand new Capture Mode UI that gives users a much-more-clear approach to capturing content on their screens. We don’t expect Chrome OS 88 until January 2021, but you can try out the feature right now if you hop over to the Beta Channel and turn on the flag found here: chrome://flags/#screen-capture.
Once you’ve enabled it, you can take advantage of all the goodies the new feature presents. Just hit the screen capture button in the system tray or hit CTRL+SHIFT+Overview and you’ll be in the new interface you see in the video above. We now have a fully-resizable capture window that you can use for still images or video with just a toggle of the switch on the floating interface, allowing for instant stills or videos of a sub-section of your display. Additionally, you can click the window button and highlight any open window to instantly grab a screen grab or recording of that particular window. Check out the video above to see it all in action.
Overall, the new capture mode is well done and feels very complete in Chrome OS 88. Using it just a handful of times, I can already tell you this tool is one of the best baked-in screen capture tools I’ve used. It is simple to understand, well laid out, and works just like you’d expect. For more intensive screen recording options (recording front camera, instant sharing, etc.), services like Loom are still better options. But for the simple, everyday captures most of us need, this tool does the trick in a clean, easy way.