Calculator on Chrome OS is now a Progressive Web App

Google is slowly moving away from legacy Chrome apps now that platform-independent Progressive Web Apps are a capable replacement. The Calculator app on Chrome OS used to be one of those legacy apps, but starting with the recent Chrome OS 97 update, it has now become a PWA that you can use on any browser.

The new progressive web app is hosted at calculator.apps.chrome (via 9to5Google). It has a web manifest file with an icon and offline caching, so Chromium-based browsers can install it on your device. It also works great with any web browser and works almost the same as the old calculator. Basic addition, subtraction, multiplication and division are available, as well as some more complex functions such as square roots, logarithms and exponents.

Even though the calculator can now be used on any device with a web browser, it is clearly meant to be used on a computer – resizing the window to smaller sizes or a portrait orientation results in hiding some commands.

The calculator is still designed to match the old hardware design, with a corner sweep effect when you click the clear button. Google hasn’t updated it to match the new Material You design language yet, but it’s just a calculator, so it’s not really need at. There are also plenty of other math and calculation tools available on Chrome OS, if the default calculator doesn’t do all you need. Wolfram Alpha is my favorite.

This comes after many other changes and improvements to Chrome OS over the past few months, such as an in-development shelf sharing feature, camera improvements, improved integration with Android phones, and more. voice for Select-to-speak. The platform also faces (a little) more competition, as Microsoft pushes Windows 11 SE into the K-12 classes where Chromebooks have dominated for much of the past decade.

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About Irene S. Stroupe

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