Safari’s comes with an eye-catching transparency effect in its address and tabs bar. Find out how you can enjoy a faux Safari-like Transparency in Chrome to spruce things up.
A unique feature to Apple’s Safari Browser is how well the transparency manages to sink in with the surrounding environment of the browser, allowing you to better focus on what is on the screen rather than having your attention diverted to unnecessary parts of the browser.
A recent update in Chrome allows users to revamp the visual appearance in a way that gels in well with the “Material Design” design language at Google. Material Design is my personal favorite design type – between Microsoft’s Metro / Modern look and Apple’s flatter iOS 9 / Yosemite design.
By enabling a hidden “Material Hybrid” option in the latest version of Google Chrome i.e. version 51, you can enjoy a semi-transparent header. It’s not Safari-levels of niiiiice, but it’s a close second.
Do keep in mind that for this guide we will be headed to the more advanced side of the browser and as such tampering with any other settings can have adverse effects. It is highly recommended you do not stray from the instructions.
Enabling Material Hybrid Flag in Chrome To Get Transparency Effects
To begin, you simply have to open up Google Chrome and in the address bar type in chrome://flags.
When you have done so, you will see a page open up with a plethora of options.
To find the option we need to adjust you will need to press CTRL + F if you are on Windows or CMD + F if you are on Mac. This will open up the search box, within said box you have to search for the following term: Material design in the browser’s top chrome.
This will lead you to a drop-down box with several options, from this box we need to choose “Material Hybrid”
Once you have chosen said option, Chrome will prompt you to relaunch the browser.
If you have any work in the tabs such as Google Docs or WordPress, it is highly recommended you save the draft before doing this.
Here’s a nice screenshot courtesy redditor 5d98a6bb that shows transparency in action:
The material Hybrid design is definitely something that truly helps give some life into the dull layout of Google Chrome, giving it a modern look.
Doing the above will have no impact on your performance or otherwise consume more RAM, so you needn’t worry about any sort of performance trade-off whatsoever.
Having applied the Material Hybrid look, I definitely look on sticking to it. Let us know in the comments section on whether you prefer the vanilla look of Google Chrome or if you like the snazzier transparency-enabled look to it.