Chrome OS ‘Holding Space’ will make it easy to work with your recent files

Google is working on a new “Holding Space” for Chrome OS that will give you quick access to your most recent and most commonly used files and screenshots.

Many times when you take a screenshot, you probably intend to share it with someone soon after. With Android 11, it’s very easy to do so with a handy new edit and share UI.

Chrome OS has already made some progress in making its screenshots easy to edit and share with convenient “copy to clipboard” and “annotate image” options in the notification, but sometimes you want to do something a little more complex or work with a file you’ve downloaded. This week, we discovered that Google has been hard at work on a new Chrome OS feature for this called “Holding Space,” behind a new flag in chrome://flags.

Quick access to screenshots, downloads, and files test

Enables quick access to screenshots, downloads, and important files which aims to increase productivity by saving time. When enabled, access recent screenshots and downloads from the shelf. Pin important files with the Files App context menu to keep them one click away.


Unlike many times where Google will create the flag before beginning development, Holding Space has been in the works since late July. That being the case, since the flag arrived in the most recent version of Chrome OS Canary today, we’re able to get a sneak peek of what Holding Space can do.

With the flag enabled, you’ll see a new button to the left of Chrome OS’s clock and notifications. Clicking this button opens a view of your most recently downloaded files as well as a small gallery of your recent screenshots.

Hovering over a file offers the option to “pin” that file into the “Pinned” bubble above, though this feature doesn’t seem to work just yet. More importantly, you can click and drag any recent or pinned file or screenshot from your Holding Space to any other app or folder, which is handy for editing your screenshots in a web app like Photopea.

Seeing how far in development Holding Space seems to be, it seems likely that the feature’s launch may be just around the corner. As Chrome OS Canary is currently on version 87, we may see Holding Space launch as early as Chrome OS 87, which is currently expected to arrive in December.

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Avatar for Kyle Bradshaw Kyle Bradshaw

Kyle is an author and researcher for 9to5Google, with special interests in Made by Google products, Fuchsia, and Stadia.

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