Chrome’s accidentally closed tabs will be reopened immediately by Google

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Chrome's accidentally closed tabs will be reopened immediately by Google

If the user restores the tab or tabs within that period, Chrome will reload them as though they’d never been closed at all. Saving users the hassle of waiting if they close a tab by mistake. Now, Google has already been putting in a lot of work to make closing and reopening tabs easier. In particular, as that applies to accidentally closed tabs and tab groups. And it’s been jumping through hoops to make those features easier to find as well.

New development on features as far out as Chrome 93 has already frozen, as of June 17 and the ‘feature freeze’ for Chrome 94 is July 29. So Chrome 94 appears to be, for now, the earliest this feature could arrive. Although Google could always add it in earlier if it chooses to. That version of Chrome is slated for desktop platforms in late September — or early October for Chromebooks.

Story Highlights

  • Google is currently developing a method to instantly reload Chrome Tabs that have been inadvertently closed on desktop systems. Or the closest thing to immediate. That is based on Android Police’s finding of three fresh commits in the Chromium Gerrit. Of course, Android offers a comparable feature already, albeit a less effective one. The back and advance buttons in Chrome already use a back-forward cache to reload pages instantly. The latter, though, is closer to what Google is presently developing. The commits show that the modification has taken effect and that closed tabs will remain unaltered in memory. In case the user unintentionally closed them, they will also remain open for 15 seconds in memory.

  • The latest change in that saga is, however, a bit different in that this will be a background change. So users won’t need to do much to take advantage of it and won’t need to learn new browsing habits. As is the case with the abovementioned reading list and bookmarks changes, which will ultimately affect how users access closed tabs. Instead, as long as users re-open Chrome tabs immediately after closing them, they’ll reload in an instant. Pulled directly from cache with no further interaction from users.  As of this writing, the new feature is not quite ready for primetime. It hasn’t even appeared as a Canary flag just yet, in fact. The flag that’s been added for testing purposes internally. So there’s no clear indication as to when end-users will see the improvement.