Google might introduce support for tab groups in a future version of the Chrome web browser.
Users can organize tabs into visually distinct groups, e.g. to separate tabs associated with different tasks.
Google Chrome never supported tab groups before. While users of the browser could install extensions such as TabSense, Tab Sugar, or Simple Window Saver to add basic grouping functionality to Chrome, it never was as powerful of a solution as the grouping functionality of Firefox Panorama or classic Opera.
Google did test tab stacking in 2012 but the feature never made it and was pulled eventually. Chrome users who enabled the Tab Stacking flag could stack tabs on top of each other to save space in the tab bar and group these.
Mozilla introduced support for tab groups in 2010 in Firefox. The feature gave Firefox users an option to group tabs and work with these groups individually in the browser. The organization revealed in 2013 that it would remove the feature and pulled it in 2015 in Firefox 45.
Opera users can install an extension like Group Your Tabs that helps with tab management but the new Opera -- that is not really that new anymore -- does not support native tab grouping functionality.
Google plans to add the feature as an experiment to Chrome. The company will add a new Tab Groups flag to Chrome that determines whether the feature is enabled or not. The practice is not uncommon as it gives Google an option to gather real-world data from users who enabled the feature in the browser.
Experimental features may be integrated natively in Chrome at one point in time, remain experimental for years, or may be removed again from the browser.
It will be interesting to see how Google's implementation of Tab Groups will look like and how much it will resemble the Firefox implementation of 2010.
It appears as if Google will focus development on the tab strip and options to group tabs together there.
Now You: would you like to see tab group functionality implemented in Google Chrome?Advertisement
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.