Millions of Chromebook users just got a cool free upgrade – but there's a catch

A new app will allow greater integration with your Android phone

Acer Chromebook Spin 513
(Image credit: Acer)

The best Chromebooks are already some of the best value laptops on the market. Users get the benefits of Google's ChromeOS system, which is designed in a similar way to Android.

They also tend to be lightweight, with strong battery life thanks to the more stripped down operating system. For this reason, Chromebooks have won favour with millions of users worldwide.

Now, users can enjoy a sweet new feature, which should make it easier than ever to use your Chromebook with your Android phone. Users can now stream apps from their phone directly on their laptop screen.

That's a useful feature. Say you're hard at work while waiting for a taxi, and you want to check in on their arrival time. Rather than break your momentum, simply stream the Uber app from your phone. The same idea applies to replying to messages, too – simply open the app, reply, and carry on with your other tasks without losing focus.

It's a really neat idea. To work, both the phone and the laptop will need to be connected to the same Wi-Fi network and physically close together. A feature called Instant Tethering will also allow you to combine the devices on a local area network.

There is a catch, though. At present, only Google and Xiaomi phones will work with the service. That means users of anything from the Google Pixel 4a up to the latest Google Pixel 7 Pro can enjoy the functionality, as well as users of everything from the Xiaomi 12T to the Xiaomi 13 Pro.

However, if you're using other handsets – from the likes of Samsung or Motorola, for example – you won't be able to use it. I would expect that to change in the future though, as compatibility across the Android network is surely the end goal here.

If you fancy giving this a go for yourself, you can find the app on the ChromeOS beta channel.

Sam Cross
Staff Writer

Online news writer at, Sam has five years of experience in online and print journalism, with work featured in publications like Metro and Last Word on Sports. After years writing about music and football, Sam now turns his hand to bringing you news about new phones, smart home products, smart watches, laptops and TVs. Sam is a longtime fan and user of Apple products, including iPhones, MacBooks and Apple Watches.He’s also T3’s resident football expert, bringing you everything you need to know about the big games, including how to watch them. In his spare time, Sam is a keen guitarist, watch lover and (very) amateur golfer.