- Google Chrome 115 now features mica material to match the design of Windows 11.
- The update also includes a preview of the new Reading mode feature in the sidebar.
- In addition, the sidebar is getting a new search experience in the sidebar.
Google is rolling out Chrome version 115 in the stable channel, and among the new changes and improvements, the latest release of the browser also brings support for the mica material to match the design language of Windows 11 and a new Reading Mode in the sidebar.
The support for the mica material has been spotted before in the Canary Channel, but it’s now available in the Stable Channel. However, it’s still something that you have to enable manually through the Flags settings by turning on the “#windows11-mica-titlebar” option and restarting the browser.
The mica material is a design technique that shines the desktop background colors through the app’s body with a semi-transparent blur effect (like a frosted window). In the case of Chrome, you can see the new material in the title bar. (The new design element is available only when not using a custom theme or theme color.)
As part of version 115, the browser introduces a new “Reading mode” experience in the sidebar, allowing you to view the currently open page without distraction by stripping away all the distracting elements, such as ads, images, and sidebars. This makes it easier to focus on the page’s text, and it can be helpful for people who are easily distracted or have difficulty reading.
Similar to the mica material, in this release, you have to enable the feature manually from the Flags settings by turning on the “#read-anything” option and restarting the browser.
Google Chrome is also gradually rolling out a new search feature for the sidebar that allows you to search for anything on the web without switching to a new tab.
The browser also runs on DNS over HTTPS for select users using a supported DNS provider and Encrypted Client Hello (ECH) by default. Finally, version 115 introduces an updated permission dialog with a new “Allow this time” option that allows permissions to specific features of the browser only once, meaning that the next time you open the website again, the site won’t have access to particular features, such as your location.
Even further, this release for the browser includes a slew of vulnerability fixes.