Chromebook users report screen flickering while watching full screen videos (workarounds inside)
A Chromebook is a laptop powered by cloud-based Google Chrome OS. These devices are usually cheaper than traditional laptops, so they are very popular in the educational and casual segment.
Chrome OS also allows you to install Android apps on your Chromebook through the Google Play Store, offering many additional possibilities.
However, some Chromebook users have been facing an annoying screen flickering issue while watching videos for a few weeks now (1, 2, 3, 4).
Chromebook screen flickering while watching full screen videos
More specifically, the Chromebook screen flickering issue can happen while the user is watching videos and set them to full screen mode.
Samsung Galaxy Chromebook Flicker Issue
I have had a Samsung Galaxy Chromebook for almost a year now, and I recently had to send it in to Samsung because the touchpad stopped working. When I got it back, parts of the case weren’t snapped back into place properly, and the screen now flickers and stutters when I put videos in fullscreen.
The issue reportedly appears in any app where you can watch videos. However, it only comes up once you put the video in full screen mode.
Netflix in Chrome Browser on full screen flickering like 1920’s B&W movie!
If not full screen, then OK, but if I select full screen either in the netflix page itself, or via the browser, within about 10-15 seconds the screen flickering is almost seizure inducing! I’ve powerwashed twice and am going to move from stable to beta to see if that resolves it.
You can see more clearly the effect caused by screen flickering in the following video:
Conditions in which the issue appears
Reports from users affected by Chromebook screen flickering issue offer more specific details about the conditions under which it can occur.
The first condition is related to system settings and the size of the Chrome/app window where the video is playing:
The issue is only present when the “border-radius” styling is enabled and when Chrome’s window is less than ~600px wide.
If only one of these conditions isn’t met, the issue just isn’t there.
Users also discovered some conditions in which the problem temporarily disappears:
Another thing worth mentioning is that when the videos stop glitching out (after scrolling enough), they won’t glitch out again as long as they don’t go outside of the viewport bounds.
If you scroll far enough so that they are not in the viewport and you scroll back to them, they will start glitching out again.
Google team is reportedly aware
A Redditor claims that the Chromebook screen flickering on full screen videos is a known bug. For now it is only recommended to wait for the March update to see if it includes the fix.
However, there is still no official confirmation that the fix will arrive with the next update. In the meantime, there is a potential workaround that could help resolve the glitch.
Apparently the problem completely disappears if you disable ‘Hardware Acceleration’ on your Chromebook. It also reportedly helps to use D3D9 or OpenGL as ANGLE backend.
We will keep our eyes open for new events that arise to update this story.
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