Chrome 80 Will Adopt Less Annoying Website Notification UI

Chrome-Feature

Getting notifications is a good thing, but only if you want them. Too many notifications can make using a device profoundly annoying, and Google is trying to address that in a new build of Chrome. In Chrome v80, Google aims to make website notifications less distracting while still giving sites the option to push content to visitors. 

Currently, any website asking for notification permission in Chrome produces a rather large, obnoxious alert bubble. Google recognizes that many users like notifications, and website operators will, of course, want to continue using notifications to drive traffic to important stories and updates. The solution is apparently to hide many of those notification requests but still give users some visual indication something is looking to get their attention. 

In Chrome 80, some of those notification popups you’ve been seeing will instead become icons in the address bar that don’t cover up the page. A message will inform you that the notification permission is blocked — so, you can think of that as the new default setting. You can, of course, opt-in to get notifications from the site if you want. Just click the “bell” icon, and you’ll get the same notification content as always. 

The “quiet” notification mode is technically an optional setting, but Google will enable it automatically in one of two conditions. First, if you regularly block notification permissions, and second, if the site asking for permission has a very low opt-in rate for notifications. Everyone will encounter sites like that, so Chrome 80 will reduce the number of notification requests you see. 

The settings for desktop (left) and mobile (right) for manually enabling the new notification UI.

After the update, you can also activate the new notification UI manually. It will be under Settings Site settings (under advanced) Notifications, where you can make adjustments to “Sites can ask to send notifications.” Under that heading, you can choose the option to “Use quieter messaging.”

Chrome 80 is currently in testing in Chrome’s beta channel, but it does not have the new notification UI just yet. The stable channel is on v79, so we’d expect v80 to begin rolling out widely in a few weeks.

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