Chrome OS RGB Keyboard Support Hints on Gaming Chromebooks

RGB keyboard support appears to be in the works for Chrome OS, and nothing says “gaming” like RGB, suggesting there may be some gaming Chromebooks on the way.

A feature flag to enable RGB keyboard support appeared in Chrome OS, 9to5Google reports. The flag’s description is quite simple: “Enable RGB keyboard support on supported devices.” While this may mean that the feature will support external keyboards plugged into Chromebooks, many device codenames are also associated with the feature flag.

They are codenamed Well, Tannic and Ripple. The first two may come from Quanta, which has designed Chromebooks for other brands, while the third appears to be a codename for a detachable keyboard, according to 9to5Google. A person working on the development of Vail has also been linked to HP’s previous devices.

Chromebooks have supported gaming in some form or the other for a while. Android apps work on Chromebooks, as do cloud gaming services like Stadia and Nvidia GeForce Now.

Adding RGB keyboard support to Chromebooks may still tempt gamers who plan to play via streaming services, but there have been other attempts at gaming natively on these PCs. Google has expressed a desire to run Steam on Chromebooks, and Valve’s Proton compatibility layer for Steam makes it possible to run many Windows games on Linux machines. Since Chrome OS has some Linux compatibility, it may be in the cards for Proton to get up and running on Google’s operating system.

The time is ripe for gaming Chromebooks, as the integrated graphics on many recent CPUs are proving to be more of a task for a lot of gaming scenarios, leaving Chromebooks with a lack of dedicated graphics processors. And we’ve even seen chips made for Chromebooks play nicely with Nvidia graphics processors.

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