Google Chrome is finally giving Android fans a feature that iPhone users have been able to use for nearly four years.
Read Later, which has been present in Chrome on iOS since March 2017, has popped up in the experimental Chrome Canary Android app. That would signal Read Later is finally coming to Chrome on Android.
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Read Later, as its name suggests, allows you to flag articles in Chrome that you wish to read at a later time. It's a trivially simple feature that avoids the need to swamp Chrome with bookmarked pages. But it's strangely absent for Chrome on Android, even in the latest phones like the Samsung Galaxy S21.
You've likely come across similar features if you use Safari's Reading List, Firefox's Pocket, or use a third-party extension such as Pocket for Chrome. But it's now finally looking like it'll be a native feature for Chome on Android.
If you want to try the feature yourself, you can download Chrome Canary and give it a try. Here's what the option looks like when you long-press on a link.
And here's the "Reading list" menu, found under the bookmarks section of the three dots menu, where you'll find the links you've saved.
This feature is also under development for the desktop version of Chrome too. You don't need a separate app to try Read Later here, just enter chrome://flags in the omnibox, then search the flags for "read later."
We first heard evidence that this feature was on the way back in 2020. While Chrome already had the option to download web pages or bookmark them, it lacked the modern reading list feature that other browsers such as Safari and Firefox have.
If you want to stick with the stable version of the Google Chrome app, then it could be some time before Read Later arrives. The last big Chrome update was Chrome 88 and Chrome Canary is on version 90 at the moment, so it could be several months of waiting at least. Alternatively here's a list of our best iPhones if the Read Later feature was the final fact that convinced you to swap from the best Android phones.
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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.