Maybe you’ve noticed the tab search feature on Chrome (see image). It’s that down arrow.
For YEARS, the leftmost icon in that group was “minimize.” Not only did Google make the Tab Search the new leftmost icon, but they made it a down arrow. It’s really intuitive to click a down arrow to minimize the window and trained behavior to click the leftmost icon in that group to do it. But that doesn’t minimize the window.
In the phrasing of Sir Topham Hatt, this causes “confusion and delay.” I either accidentally click the arrow or have to stop to think which one to click.
When this feature was experimental, you could disable it in
chrome://flags. Since it went to release, the searching I’ve done says you can no longer remove it.
In my opinion, this is a huge usability antipattern, or in the words of my title, a crime. It disrupts learned behavior, disrupts intuitive behavior, and does not add NEARLY enough value to compensate for that. At minimum it should be easy to remove.
There are multiple Google services and products I’d love to dump because of this growing disregard for UX. But to start, it’s going to be Chrome. Thanks for giving me the push I needed to stop being your customer, Google.
1 thought on “Chrome’s Usability Crime”
I didn’t even know that was a feature. I had downloaded an extension to give me something similar!
Notably, it’s on the other side of the window on Mac, so it doesn’t get in the way. I wonder if any of the team that released this are Windows users? Most of my teams have been Mac-only.