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Google Chrome To Bid Adieu To The Mostly Redundant Desktop Notification Centre

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Google has finally decided to let go of  the Notification center from Chrome for Windows, Mac, and Linux. The company made an announcement today, in which it cited the fact that hardly anyone visits the centre at all, as the main reason behind the closure.

There are no tears being shed however, and the decision, which comes almost 2 years after the notification center was first launched, is being hailed by many as ‘About time‘. The reason behind this apparent cold-heartedness towards something which was obviously meant to enhance consumer experience is pretty simple, the notification center did not help.

The introduction of Push notifications in May 2010 — via Chrome 5 — meant that Chrome apps and extensions were able to support notifications and alert users to changes and new information, that came in while they were not directly perusing the app/extension. This was followed by the notification center in 2013, which had the additional ability of working even when the chrome browser was closed.

That was where the trouble really started.

Giving the Notification center the ability to work in the background meant pop-ups, even when you didn’t want/need them. And for those with a whole bunch of apps and extensions on their hands, disabling the center was really the only viable option. After all, in this age and time,when we are hardly ever out of reach of our smartphones and laptops, the Notification center comes upon as a somewhat unnecessary — and often annoying — luxury.

The change also means that developers who until now relied solely on the center to deliver alerts from their applications will have to change how things work. Notifications sent solely to the center will show an error and API events associated with the former will cease to work. For more information on the topic, please refer to the notifications documentation.

As per Google, the change will be visible in the upcoming releases of Chrome. While Chrome 46, released yesterday, still sports the center, Chrome 47 — set to be released in 6 weeks — is likely to arrive without it.

A bibliophile and a business enthusiast.

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