About this time last year, Google added special, colorful cards to the home screen of the Explore app (formerly the ‘Help’ app). These were created to be a simple and welcoming way to help onboard new Chromebook users who just returned home from the store with their devices. Instead of having to visit the Perks page on the web or in the Explore app to see what free goodies can be claimed (this seems simple enough as it’s directly below the home tab), the app itself is now showing cards in this new home screen experience for these.
Any attempt to unify every bit of information one would need out of the box to get the most out of their device is welcome, in my opinion, and I’m okay with a bit of redundant data across different pages if it means different types of users can find it in their own way. Clicking the ‘Get perk’ button below any of these specific cards as seen above will redirect you to the Chromebook Perks page in the browser. I’m a bit sad that it doesn’t just drag you over to the Perks tab in the Explore app, but maybe that will be improved in the future.
I’m currently seeing this experience on Chrome OS Canary, and I’ll admit that others may already have it, but this is my first time encountering Welcome cards that are specific to perks and I thought it was something worth sharing! If we see these update over time when new perks become available, this would be even cooler – especially as there are new Chromebook users coming into the fold daily as the OS continues to dominate the market.
You’ll also notice that each card has been reworked. Compare the image above to the feature image for this article and you’ll see that each one now features a category tag at the top to distinguish them from one another and many of the Googley images have been stripped out. So long as they remain eye-catching and useful to the user’s experience on their laptop – especially new users, they can do whatever they want in this space for all I care.
Are you already seeing these onboarding cards for perks or are you only seeing the ones that were added last year? Some examples of preexisting cards include getting help with connecting your printer, adding additional people to your device, installing Android apps, and using Drive Files offline, among many others.