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Enable and explore Reading Mode in Chrome for Android

Make reading long articles easier in the Chrome browser with this experimental feature

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One of the best things about the Chrome browser is that using extensions it’s highly customisable, but until recently one thing it has been distinctly lacking is any real way to alter the way the browser handles long passages of text. With badly formatted websites often making certain passages of text unreadable, the new Reading Mode option within the Chrome browser is a very welcome addition. Although not as in-depth as the likes of Amazon or Play Books, which have dedicated reading facilities, Chrome’s Reading Mode formats certain sites into a more manageable and minimalist style that’s not only easy on the eye but also includes some helpful features, such as page searching and sharing.
However, before hurriedly trying to find where the option is on your Chrome settings menu, you’ll first need to go into Chrome’s experimental features menu to get the page to appear. We’ll show you how to not only navigate around this hidden menu, but also how to enable the Reading Mode and get the most out of it.

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This tutorial first appeared in Android Magazine issue 47. Buy the issue here or subscribe to avoid missing future tutorials.

 

  1. Chrome reaading mode step1

    Open Experimental Features

    Open the Chrome browser and type chrome://flags into the search bar at the top of the app. This will direct you to Chrome’s experimental features page. Scroll down the list until you find the Enable Reader Mode Icon option before selecting the Enable option.

  2. Chrome reaading mode step2

    Save and restart

    Scroll right to the bottom of the page and select the Relaunch Now option that will now be shown. Choosing this will not only save the changes you’ve made, but also navigate your browser back to the designated homepage that you’ve set for it.

  3. Chrome reaading mode step3

    Find compatible site

    Not every website will be compatible with the new Reading Mode, but for the most part you should find all sites that include long passages of text will have the new icon present. To activate the new mode, select the A symbol now listed at the top of the app, next to the search bar.

  4. Chrome reaading mode step4

    Start reading

    The browser will now take a few seconds to reformat the site before displaying the text within its Reading Mode feature. As you scroll through your favourite longreads, you should find all images and videos will have been appropriately embedded for you to use.

  5. Chrome reaading mode step5

    Extra options

    Perform a long press on a particular piece of text to open up some additional options. Use the paper icon to copy the text to a clipboard, use the glass icon to search for a specific keyword, or use the share icon to send the text to your friends and family.

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