How to Enable the Secret Smooth Scrolling Feature on Google Chrome

Sandeep Agarwal

Mouse-WheelYou must have noticed while browsing the internet that web pages scroll up or down usually three lines at a time. This scrolling behavior can be observed when you use one notch of the mouse wheel or a single key stroke on the keyboard.

While it’s not a serious problem, there is always a chance that you could get irritated and lose concentration while reading a lengthy article. You want the scrolling to be smooth, don’t you?

We have talked about smooth scrolling before when we showed you how to activate/deactivate it on Firefox. Generally, this feature ships with almost every browser out there. Unfortunately, it has not been built-in to Chrome as yet. Worry not, it is available as an official experiment and we will help you figure out how to turn it on.

Google Experiments: Check out our post on cool experiments from Google on Chrome that demonstrate web technology. They are really interesting.

Steps to Activate Smooth Scrolling on Chrome

As we already said, smooth scrolling on Google Chrome is an experimental feature and is not supported against any malfunction. Here’s the disclaimer from Google.

Chrome-Experiments-Disclaimer

Step 1: You will need to access a hidden Chrome page by using one of its chrome:// URLs. Type in chrome://flags on Chrome’s address bar and hit Enter.

Chrome-Flags

Step 2: That will open Chrome’s experiments page. Scroll down till you come across the option for Smooth Scrolling.

Chrome-Smooth-Scrolling

Step 3: In order to enable the experimental smooth scrolling implementation, click on Enable. When you do that a horizontal pane will appear on the bottom of the browser. Click on the button reading Relaunch Now so that Chrome restarts and the changes take effect.

Relaunch-Browser-Bar

Based on you browsing habits, you may or may not notice any difference in browser behaviorafter enabling the feature. But once you get in to reading some article and using the scroll, you will know what it means.

Cool Tip: Google chrome:// URLs are very similar to Firefox about:config preferences. You can discover a lot of hidden features at these places. You can play with them while being careful that you do not spoil anything.

Smooth Scroll Extension

Smooth Scroll is a decent alternative to using the experimental feature on Chrome. It is an extension, and though not available on the web store, it can be installed by following the trick in this article – force install extensions and external scripts on Chrome.

Smooth Scroll offers a settings page wherein you can define the frame rate, animation time, and stride size per scroll. And, if you wish you may apply the settings to mouse scroll only or keyboard too. Here’s the settings page preview.

Smooth-Scroll-Extension-Settings

Conclusion

While Google has been a little late in plugging in this feature, I am sure it will be placed under the settings page some day. Till then, use the experimental feature and make yourself comfortable, or tell us if you prefer to use the Smooth Scroll extension. Here’s to smoother scrolling on Chrome!

Image Credit: Rod Senna

Also See
#chrome #keyboard

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