What you need to know
- Google is testing Quick Answers, a Chrome OS feature that uses the Google Assistant to provide resources based on highlighted text.
- Quick Answers works a lot like macOS' 'Look Up' feature.
- Google is currently testing it out on Chrome OS 81.
Google is working on a new feature for Chrome OS — Quick Answers. Doing exactly what the name implies, Quick Answers is a feature that leverages the Google Assistant to quickly answer queries. It's a lot like Look Up on macOS, offering definitions of highlighted words, as well as pronunciations and google translations for foreign languages. You'll need to have a Google Assistant Chromebook. In other words, all modern ones aren't running on G-Suite accounts.
As spotted by Chrome Unboxed it's now rolled out to the Canary build in Chrome OS 81. Enabling it as trivial as switching the #enable-quick-answers flash in Chrome://flags. While the flag was present in previous beta builds, this is the first time it actually works, as you can see in the image below.
Seeing as it's only in Canary at this point, it's unlikely to hit Stable without a few more months of testing. Other than that, it's a nifty feature that makes use of the really underutilized Assistant integration in Chrome OS.
Chromebooks will be starting 2020 in a big way as powerful Chromebooks from Samsung, Asus, and Google make their way down to the markets. Google also plans to improve the tablet mode of Chrome OS with a powerful gesture system, tackling criticism that the platform has been unsuited for powering devices like the Pixel Slate.
Quick Answers isn't going to be a killer feature don't get me wrong, its just nice to have on a platform that needs more nice-to-haves.