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Chrome 74 Brings Dark Mode To Windows 10: How To Switch It On

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This is not a drill: Dark Mode is finally available on Chrome for Windows 10 with the arrival version 74. It's not a beta feature nor is it only accessible to testers — it's actually live and available to all now.

Dark Mode, probably one of the most requested features not just on Chrome but on most other apps as well, has been in development for quite some time now. The feature is tied to the "Colors" settings in Windows 10. Which means, as on macOS, there is no way to manually trigger the theme just for the browser — the whole system must be in Dark Mode.

To turn it on, go to Windows 10's Settings page, navigate to the Personalization category, select Colors, and toggle the "Dark" option.

Dark Mode On Chrome 74

Selecting the "Dark" default app mode will redress Chrome's usually pristine white aesthetic to an edgier, sleeker black theme. The background switches to dark gray instead of pure black, though. The tabs background, meanwhile, is a deep shade of blue in this mode, it's worth mentioning. 9to5Google notes the transition is seamless and instant the minute Dark Mode is switched on from within the Windows 10 Settings panel.

Dark Mode affects the omnibox, the Bookmarks bar, the three-dot overflow menu, and the new tab page. Settings, Bookmarks, and other pages retain their original white color scheme. It's not clear if this is just a bug and whether Google plans to dress these pages in black down the line too.

Because Chrome's Dark Mode looks similar to incognito mode, the private browsing mode now features a text badge next to the profile icon to distinguish itself.

Other Improvements

Besides Dark Mode, version 74 of Chrome also introduces a new bunch of accessibility options, including a motion reduction feature for users prone to motion sickness that can be caused by transition animation, parallax scrolling, and zooming effects. Chrome can now order websites and experiences to reduce these kinds of fluid animations.

Even those who don't necessarily get motion-sick can benefit from this since reducing or turning off animations will make for a significantly faster browsing experience. Unfortunately, like third-party apps, site developers have to add support for this feature. They can either create motion-reduced versions of their pages or turn off specific animations altogether.

The new update also prevents pages that are being closed from launching popups. The browser's built-in popup blocker already does this, but the new behavior now prohibits it regardless whether the built-in protection is toggled on or off. Finally, Chrome 74 also deprecates "drive-by downloads in sandboxed iframes." Instead of starting downloads automatically after landing on a new page, users will now have to manually click.

Chrome version 74 is now available on Windows, Mac, and Linux. Android and Chrome OS releases will follow in the coming weeks.

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