Google said Wednesday that it’s joining the group of browser companies offering grouped tabs, which should roll out next week within Chrome.
No, that doesn’t mean a cross-industry collaboration on how to group browser tabs, unfortunately. What it does mean is that the version of Chrome which Google plans to release next week includes the ability to group and color-code browser tabs. These tab groups are available within the Chrome beta channel right now.
Virtually all major browsers allow you to CTRL-click more than one tab and then manipulate them as a group, sliding them around your browser or allowing them to be opened in another window. Microsoft’s legacy Edge browser (not the “new Edge”) allowed users to group tabs and then “set them aside” to form custom groups for work, travel, or whatever. That feature hasn’t yet been implemented in the new Edge. Vivaldi, too, allows you to create “tab stacks” that are essentially groups of tabs for a specific purpose.
Now, Chrome will allow you to do the same, but with a twist. While you’ll be able to collect a group of tabs together, you’ll also be able to color-code them with a small outline, as well as assign them labels. It appears that the tabs and their labels will still live in your browser tab bar, as opposed to being stored elsewhere.
“Chrome’s stability and performance are important to us, so we’re releasing tab groups slowly in our upcoming version of Chrome, which begins rolling out next week,” Google said in a blog post. “Tab groups will be available for Chrome on desktop across Chrome OS, Windows, Mac and Linux.”
Microsoft hasn’t said whether the new tab grouping feature will arrive on its Chrome browser for Android.