Chrome Shows Install Button In Omnibox For PWAs

Recently released stable version of Google Chrome on desktop platforms now shows an install button in the omnibox for Progressive Web Apps (PWAs). With this animated install button, Chrome aims to increase installations of PWAs. Upcoming Chromium-based Microsoft Edge browser will also support this feature.


This small installation button would appear in the omnibox, next to the bookmarking star icon. Users can click on this button and install the PWA on their computer easily. On Android, the PWAs have been able to show installation prompt for long. Many Android browsers including Chrome, Firefox and Samsung Internet Browser already offer button or prompt to install the PWAs.

The Progressive Web Apps are essentially web apps with enhanced capabilities to offer native app like features. The PWAs can be installed on devices similar to the native apps, running in a separate browser shell. Android, Windows and ChromeOS offer excellent support for PWAs, while browsers like Chrome, Firefox and Edge offer installation of PWAs across multiple platforms.

The Chrome on Android takes an interesting approach of installing PWAs on the device. It generates a signed WebAPK file on the fly, and installs the PWA just like any other APK package file.

1 thought on “Chrome Shows Install Button In Omnibox For PWAs”

  1. “The Progressive Web Apps are essentially web apps with enhanced capabilities to offer native app like features.”
    No they’re not. Progressive Web apps are essentially websites that fake enhanced capabilities to come across as native apps while they’re not.

    Luckily my phone hasn’t been infected with this nonsense just yet. My popup blocker is doing its job and these buttons don’t show up on my mobile browser.

    Unfortunately, the browsers on my PC are a different story. Even though I have no intention of using PWAs my browsers force a whole bunch of pointless icons in the address bar next to the bookmark icon and none of the browser makers feel it’s necessary to allow users to opt out and keep their browser experience clean.

    If you find a way to get rid of these unnecessary buttons, I’m all ears.

Leave a Comment