If you leave your Chromebook idle for a few minutes, it'll go to sleep. That's a sensible thing for it to do, but if you've always wished for a screensaver, your prayers may soon be answered: a recent Chromium commit shows that Chrome OS could pick up a Chromecast-style ambient mode.

On Chromecast, Android TV, and Smart Displays, ambient mode kicks in when the device has been idle for a while. The mode cycles through your Google Photos, works of art, or headlines, depending on your preferences. The commit says the code adds "the basic framework to show photos in the Ambient mode."


Ambient mode active on the Google Nest Hub.

Chrome Story notes that the code doesn't necessarily mean screensaver functionality is imminent; it could be used for retail kiosks or something. It seems like the most likely application, though — a Smart Display help page even refers to the mode as a screensaver. It's unclear when ambient mode will be implemented in a consumer release.