Google to kill off Chrome app launcher for Windows, Mac and Linux by July

Chrome apps aren't going away, but Google is killing the Chrome app launcher for competing platforms.
Written by Jake Smith, Contributor

Chrome app launcher

Google announced on Tuesday it's getting rid of the Chrome app launcher on OS X, Windows, and Linux. A tool released in 2013, the Chrome app launcher offered a container for browser-based apps designed to work offline.

Google explains that next week Chrome will no longer enable the launcher when users first install a Chrome app, and in July, existing instances of the launcher will be removed.

The Chrome app launcher found within Chrome OS will stay, and of course Chrome apps on OS X, Windows, and Linux can still be launched through their shortcuts in the bookmarks bar.

Google has always pushed apps as one of Chrome's key features, however Google says users would rather launch the apps from the browser than a separate app launcher.

The move to kill the app launcher gels well with an overall effort from the company to clean the Chrome browser. In late-2015, Google ditched Chrome's notification center as it looked to streamline Chrome's functionality.

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