Chrome OS invasion
Richer notifications, once they do work, are part of a larger push from Google to take features from Chrome OS and put them in Chrome for Windows and Mac that create a mini-OS inside your PC's regular operating system.
Beyond richer notifications, Google is working on bringing packaged apps to Windows, which are Chrome-based apps that act as regular desktop apps. Packaged apps also come with a separate app launcher that allows you to launch specific Chrome apps right from the taskbar. This feature currently is only available to users in the Chrome Dev update channel.
Another long-anticipated service expected to land on Chrome for PCs is Google Now, the company's take on a personal digital assistant that delivers information as you need it. The service can, for example, alert you when to leave for an appointment across town based on current traffic conditions, or let you know about the flight status for an upcoming trip. Google Now was spotted in Chrome Canary, the alpha build of Chrome, back in March, but was not operational.
The Richer notifications feature isn't the only significant change to the latest stable edition of Chrome for Windows. The new build is also using the Blink browser engine first announced in April after Google split with WebKit. The new version of Chrome also fixes more than 15 bugs and security fixes affecting Windows users.
By now, most people should be using the updated version of the Chrome browser. If you want to verify you're on the latest build, type chrome://chrome in your browser's address bar. The version number at the top should be 28.0.1500.71m.
Sign up for CIO Asia eNewsletters.