Chrome OS is Google’s Linux-based operating system available on Chromebooks. It’s lightweight and fast, designed mainly for web browsing and web-based applications. Google is constantly expanding and adding cool features. It has grown to resemble Android in many different ways as well. Now, according to a commit on the Chromium Gerrit, the Chrome OS Family Link will soon support setting time limits on browsing.
If you’re not too sure what exactly Family Link is, you’d be forgiven. It allows you to set parental controls on a Chromebook when logged into a certain Google account. You can restrict the websites that can be viewed, restrict access to incognito mode, disallow granting permissions to websites, and more. There are a few things that Family Link can’t do, which Google outlines clearly on the Family Link information page. Google specifically mentions that time limits, remote device blocking, app installation from the Google Play Store (this is also set to change) and location reporting are currently unavailable. It does raise the question why Google would mention these specifically if they don’t intend to ever support them. With time limits being introduced, it’s definitely fair to assume that we’ll see the other options arrive sometime in the future to the Chrome OS Family Link.
This is just the latest in the long string of improvements coming to Chrome OS, and it’s great to see Google doubling down on supporting their platform. Being a lightweight platform, it requires cheaper hardware to run, and for many is more affordable than a regular laptop, while fulfilling the same usage. Complete with support for Android applications on the Google Play Store, it covers just about anything a lighter user would want when it comes to web browsing. We should expect to see time restrictions coming to Chrome OS in a full release soon enough, with it entering the canary channel even sooner if you want to give it a try.
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