Google Chrome’s overflow menu on Android has been rather hard to navigate for ages — it mostly consists of text-only entries, so whenever you try to find something in it without relying on muscle memory, you’re forced to read through every single label. Google seems to recognize this problem, as it’s experimenting with a redesigned menu in Chrome Beta that groups the entries and adds icons to each of them.
The new menu is available starting in Chrome 86. Besides adding icons to all of the entries, the update also introduces a gray background to the familiar top row of icon-only entries. The redesigned menu is divided into four groups, one revolving around new tabs, another for history, downloads, bookmarks, and recent tabs, a third one for miscellaneous things (share, find in page, translate, add to home screen, and desktop site), and a last one for settings and help.
Left: Chrome 85. Middle: Chrome 86. Right: Flags activating the new menu.
If you’d like to try the new interface for yourself, head to chrome://flags on Chrome Beta (or Dev or Canary) and search for overflow menu. Then set these two flags to active: Android tabbed app overflow menu icons and Android tabbed app overflow menu Regroup. You can also try out some other grouping variations from the drop-down menu.
As with any feature that has yet to go stable, Google might scrap it at any time without warning, but from using the new menu just a little bit, I already notice how much better it is, so let’s hope that Google will make it official sooner rather than later.