Chrome Downloads UI

Google plans to replicate the Downloads UI of Edge

According to a new patch found by avid spotter Leopeva64 in Chromium Gerrit, Google plans to introduce a new downloads UI in the Chrome browser copied straight from Microsoft Edge.

In the current stable version of Google Chrome, the browser puts downloads into a “shelf” at the bottom of the screen.

Microsoft Edge used the same idea before switching to a more compact “flyout” design. Currently it looks as follows.

A new implementation of the downloads UI in Chrome could soon follow the same route.

Add skeleton for download toolbar icon. Adding foundation for the download toolbar icon as part of the download UX redesign. This CL only tracks the state of downloads and produces a disappearing icon in the toolbar.

Google wants the new downloads button to appear only when the browser downloads a file or when the download was initiated in the past 24 hours. The button might also show the number of active downloads and a progress ring with a percentage of current downloads.

The code description in Chromium Gerrit sounds much like the download UI in Microsoft Edge, although the latter offers a bunch of additional features.

While Google plans to make the downloads button only temporary, Microsoft Edge users can pin the downloads button to the toolbar. Besides, the button lets users access older downloads at any given moment, not only files downloaded during the last 24 hours.

It is interesting to see Google copying a feature that many users do not like or even openly hate. Unfortunately, there is currently no way to test the new downloads UI in Chrome, so we do not know whether it is better than the one in Edge or not. You can expect the redesigned downloads UI to hit the Canary channel somewhere in the near future.

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