How to Enable or Disable Side Panel in Google Chrome

Here's how to enable or disable Side Panel in Google Chrome. It is another improvement made to the browser. The new feature extends the recently introduced Reading List feature that will now appear in a sidebar on the right of the browser's window, along with bookmarks.

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The change is available for testing starting with Chrome Canary build 91.0.4453.0. The feature reminds of Collections in Microsoft Edge, which also appears in a similar flyout that can be pinned to the right.

In Edge, the Collections sidebar hosts the URLs you have added to a collection, and also can display recommendations from Pinterest. In Google Chrome, there are no recommendations from any online service. Instead, the "Side Panel" contains everything you saved to the Reading list, and your bookmarks. This solutions appears reasonable, since Reading List in Chrome is an extension for bookmarks.  Besides these two, there is also a search box that you can use to quickly find a bookmark.

So, Side Panel is available starting in Chrome Canary build 91.0.4453.0, but is hidden by default behind a flag. Also, keep in mind that it depends on Reading List. If the latter is not enabled in your Chrome, we Side Panel won't work too. In that case, enable the Reading List before proceeding.

This post will show you how to enable or disable the Side Panel feature in the Google Chrome browser. Again, you must be running build 91.0.4453.0 or above.

How to Enable Side Panel in Google Chrome

  1. Open Google Chrome.
  2. Type chrome://flags/#side-panel into the address bar, and hit the Enter key.
  3. Now, select Enabled to the right of the Side Panel parameter.Chrome Enable Side Panel
  4. Relaunch the Chrome browser when prompted.
  5. Now, click on the Reading list button in the toolbar to open the Side Panel view.Google Chrome Side Panel

You are done.

Similar the previous steps, you can disable this feature if you don’t like its implementation or have already finished testing it. Here's how it can be done.

Disable Side Panel in Google Chrome

  1. In Google Chrome, type chrome://flags/#side-panel into the address bar
  2. Hit the Enter key.
  3. Now, select Disabled from the drop-down menu next to the Side Panel option.Disable Side Panel In Google Chrome
  4. Relaunch Google Chrome to apply the change.

This will disable the Side Panel feature.

Tip: You can also set the Side Panel flag to Default. As of the moment of this writing, it also disables the Side Panel pane.

That's it.

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