As we wade deeper into what looks like a new season for Chromebooks, more and more new features continue to arise and give glimpses of what Chrome OS will look like in the near future.
While some of these changes (like the one we are talking about here) won’t be game-changers, each small adjustment to the OS simply serves to make things smoother as new users come on board.
Currently, if you have a Chromebook with a backlit keyboard, adjusting the level is a bit of trial and error. You don’t know that you are at full brightness until it simply stops getting brighter and you don’t know you are at the lowest level until it simply turns off.
The new behavior will make much more sense, giving users a bubble notification just like screen brightness. Imagine if that slider wasn’t there and you were just left to guess where you were on your screen brightness level. Seems silly, right?
Same goes for the keyboard backlight.
Soon, we’ll have a nice meter to know exactly where the keyboard lighting is set.
Why This Could Matter
For a long time, there haven’t been many Chromebooks with backlit keyboards. Sure, we’re seeing a few more, but the overall number is still pretty low.
If they are taking the time to give a permanent software spot to this feature, perhaps it means many more Chromebooks are coming with backlit keyboards.
Gabriel wrote about a low-end, Apollo Lake Chromebook called ‘Sand’ back in April that employs a backlit keyboard. Being a budget-minded device, it is encouraging to see it get this hardware treatment. While we haven’t seen a massive uptick in backlit keyboards, perhaps this software change is hinting at that possibility.
Let’s not forget ‘Eve’, though. It seems this device is getting every feature under the sun, so this move could be targeted directly at ‘Eve’ and still make sense. As we’ve said before, ‘Eve’ looks to be the flagship Chromebook to usher in a whole new generation of Chromebooks to a much broader audience of new users. Even if more devices don’t have backlit keyboards, it would make sense that they get this feature in place before ‘Eve’ shows up and begins the marketing push we expect.
For now, it is simply a great new feature in the ever-evolving Chrome OS.