Chrome just got a big upgrade for scrolling through your tabs — how to try it now

Google Chrome
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Navigating tabs in Google Chrome is about to get much more convenient.

Scrollable tab bars are something you can already use in Safari and Firefox, so it's about time Google implemented it for itself. And not only has it been added into Chrome, but the best part is also you can enable the feature yourself right now. Just make sure you're using the latest version of the browser, Chrome 88.

If you'd like to try this feature for yourself, then navigate to chrome://flags via your omnibox, then search for "Scrollable TabStrip." When you've found it, simply select "Enable." 

Google Chrome scrollable tabs

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

After enabling scrollable tabs, you can move through the tabs with either your mouse or trackpad. However, you can also use left and right arrow buttons, which you'll find to the right of the new tab button if you activate another flag named "Tab Scrolling Buttons." 

In addition to letting you move through your long list of tabs, Chrome devs are also experimenting with how wide to make the tabs in the newest build of Chrome Canary. You can let the tabs shrink the more of them you open, as they do now, have them stay at a fixed small, medium or large width, or not have them shrink at all.

We all know how tricky it can be to tell which tab is which if you have multiple windows of the same site open. So this feature could enable you to read the full title of pages while still being able to access all of them easily.

These resizeable tabs are only available in Chrome Canary, not as a flag in the stable version of the browser that you're likely using. However, if the feature does well, there's no reason why we won't see it appear in the stable version soon.

Richard Priday
Assistant Phones Editor

Richard is based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, tablets, gaming, and whatever else people need advice on. Following on from his MA in Magazine Journalism at the University of Sheffield, he's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.