Last Wednesday, a seemingly innocuous request appeared in Google’s Chromium codebase: “Add mappings for “Hamburger” and “Assistant” keys on Hammer/Wand/Whiskers and BRYDGE keyboards.”
But that single sentence may have been enough to reveal a secret — Google may be planning to bring a new wave of high-end Chrome OS tablets to market.
That’s because Brydge is the name of a manufacturer of high-end detachable keyboardsand , but Google doesn’t currently have a lot of tablets on the market to justify a third-party keyboard. Last we counted, it was just the and the detachable , which already comes with its own keyboard. (Google’s own Pixel C, , ran Android instead of Chrome OS.)
Would Brydge build a keyboard just for the Acer, which was generally panned in early reviews? Not too likely.
It’s not like Google hasn’tabout wanting to have more Chrome OS tablets, though. And other references in the Chrome OS codebase have suggested that other detachable Chromebooks, perhaps even one with a built-in stylus, may be in our future.
9to5Google, which reported the Brydge reference earlier, is currently gathering evidence to suggest that Google is working on multiple detachable Chrome OS prototypes, code-named Nocturne and Meowth, which seem to include built-in fingerprint sensors. And Samsung was reportedly working on a detachable dubbed “Nautilus,” though we haven’t heard about that one in a while.
Google and Brydge didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.