What I would like to achieve is described, in this article, i.e. to create a shortcut to a web page on my home screen, that opens in a separate window rather than as a tab in Chrome:

The icon will appear on your home screen like any other app shortcut or widget, so you can drag it around and put it wherever you like. Chrome for Android loads the website as a “web app” when you tap the icon, so it will get its own entry in the app switcher and won’t have any browser interface getting in the way.

I specifically want to do this on my tablet, a Google Pixel C running Nougat (Android 7.1.1).

Whenever I tap on "Add to Home screen" in Chrome, it will create a shortcut that opens a new tab in Chrome, which is what I don't want.

How can I get the desired behavior? It appears to have worked in 2014 when the mentioned article was written. Why would Google remove this useful feature?


1 Answer 1


What you're looking for is a progressive web app (PWA). After creating a shortcut for PWA's they open in an app shell giving it an app-like feel while it's still a web app. You can try that with Twitter Lite or Flipboard.

Here are some links that might help -

Goolge CodeLabs - Your First PWAPP

Auth 0 - Introduction to Progressive Web Apps (Offline First) - Part 1

  • 1
    In other words, this will only work if the website supports it. You can't make it work for websites that don't support it.
    – Flimm
    May 6, 2018 at 6:51
  • If there is no PWA availible, you can use WebApps for opening the page "outside" a browser.
    – Lluser
    Jan 11, 2022 at 7:16

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