Chrome 99 for Windows and Mac picks up a neat sidebar for your reading list and bookmarks

Disable the bookmarks bar without feeling guilty


Chrome 99 is currently rolling out to stable users across all platforms worldwide. If you just updated either your Windows computer or your MacBook, you may have found yourself overnight with a new button to the right of your address bar. It’s not a new extension, even if it might look like one at first sight. Google has added a sidebar to the browser, and it might actually be a better way of managing your bookmarks and your reading list than keeping those visible at all times at the top of the app.

This snazzy new sidebar appears when you click on the button located to the left of your profile and the right of your extensions. It features two tabs: one for your reading list and one for your bookmarks, as well as a “close” button to retract it. The bookmarks tab will show you all of your previously saved items, while the “reading list” is the same feature Google has been pushing on everyone lately. We first spotted this change last year, but it’s taken a while to make its way to the stable branch.


Personally, I dig this change – especially for bookmarks. I regularly use saved pages, but they make my Chrome window look cluttered, and it’s great that I can now remove the bookmark bar without losing quick access to my favorite sites. It also nets some extra screen real estate – always a bonus. While I have yet to try out the reading list, the sidebar also makes it easier to access and use. It might be a far better place for it without making it overly invasive.

This change is rolling out right now with Chrome 99, so check for updates on your Windows or Mac PC if you want to try it out. If you prefer your classic bookmarks bar, disable the sidebar by going into the flags menu, searching for “Side panel,” and toggling it off.

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