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It's been a couple of years since the Chrome OS UI got any considerable design updates, some of which were polarizing changes that stirred controversy in the Chromebook community. Google has since been steadily updating its core apps and system UI to a more modern Material Design style, including the new Media app and tablet mode experience that rolled out in the Chrome OS Stable channel this year. If there's one component that still feels out of place, it's the login and lock screen—more specifically, the password field. That's changing soon, though, as Google is experimenting with a refreshed text field to make it look more consistent with other system UI elements.
In a recent Chrome OS Canary update, Google added a fresh new coat of paint to the password field that brings it in line with the enter button next to it. The change is immediately apparent as soon as you boot Chrome OS. Here's a peek at the new design.
The updated password field using Google Material theme.
The login screen is now even more reminiscent of the design found in older versions of Apple's macOS. Unlike the old UI, the text field is now filled and translucent—as opposed to fully transparent with an underline—and uses a rounded corner radius. Characters typed into the area will now be center-justified, and the "dots" are slightly larger and more visible to the user. Other smaller minor improvements to the text box include increasing the padding and margins for better readability.
Subtle tweaks in Chrome OS Beta
Google recently published 90.0.4430.30 to the Chrome OS Beta channel, and it tweaks the login screen further. Unlike the variant in Stable, passwords are no longer center-aligned in the login page. The field is noticeably slimmer in the new update, offering more space for the 'dots.' The smart unlock icon also gets a small visual revamp, sporting a larger, all-white color that pulses when looking for your phone. The blurred background also loses some color tint, too.
Updated login screen in the Chrome OS Beta channel. Left: Stable. Right: Beta/Canary.
While left-justified allows more characters in the password field, I personally prefer the old layout. The larger field looks cleaner, and the 'dots' are more legible than the new design.
Some may not enjoy the "Mac-ification" of the text field, but I think it's a step in the right direction. Although subtle, the design tweak is a good touch to make the login and lock screen look more consistent with the rest of Chrome OS.