How to Turn Off Tab Hover Card Previews in Chrome

Mar 15, 2021 - 18 Comments

Disabling Chrome tab hover previews

Chrome users may be interested in disabling the tab hover previews that pop-up as you hover the cursor over browser tabs. This feature can be nice for some, but distracting for others.

We’ll show you how to disable those tab hover thumbnail previews (or Tab Hover Cards, as Chrome refers to them) in Chrome on Mac and other platforms too.

If you were happy about disabling Safari tab previews on Mac you’ll probably be equally excited about turning these off for Chrome as well.

How to Disable Tab Hover Previews in Chrome

This should work in Chrome for Mac, Windows, Chromebook / Chrome OS, and Linux, as well as for Chrome Canary and developer builds.

  1. Open the Chrome browser, if you haven’t done so already
  2. In the URL bar, enter the following and hit return:
  3. On new Chrome versions:

    On older Chrome versions:

  4. For “Tab Hover Cards” choose “Disabled” from the dropdown menu
  5. How to Disable Chrome Tab Hover Preview Cards

  6. Relaunch Chrome

Once Chrome has relaunched you can hover the cursor over the tabs and no preview thumbnail will generate or show up anymore.

This can sometimes make Chrome feel a bit faster, and perhaps even reduce it’s memory footprint a bit, since fewer resources are being used by the browser to render the thumbnail previews on hover.

While this is obviously for Chrome, if you’re a Mac user who uses multiple browsers you might find it nice to know how to turn off Safari tab previews on Mac as well.


Related articles:

Posted by: Paul Horowitz in Tips & Tricks


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  1. notputingmyname says:

    i did this a while ago (more than year now) and it was a savior because it would load the page without me even opening the tab (super annoying and resource consuming) but today i realized that tabs now give me the same preview of the tab window that i turned off so long ago. come to find out that this option i initially turned off is no longer in the chrome://flags/. does anyone know how we can turn this off again?

  2. Zeph says:

    Thanks for sharing how to deal with this rather annoying “feature”!

    However, it seems that the name – and thus the URL – of the experimental feature has changed; it is now “chrome://flags/#tab-hover-card-images” (rather than chrome://flags/#tab-hover-cards”)…

  3. Steve says:


    Wish there was some way we could be in contact. I thought I was the only person in the world who observed this and saw these things. I’m becoming a developer merely so I can create all types of applications, from games to useful apps, that do not change once they fulfill their desired functionality other than for security and bug fixes. The youth these days is brainwashed. “How could a game be fun if it isn’t updated?” they might say. Well, Chess and Go haven’t been updated for hundreds of years. A good product shouldn’t need updating, be it a game or anything else. Chrome was working fine, so why update it? Well, it’s due to the reasons you’ve stated. The new ethos of modern society is “if it ain’t broke, then break it”. Logic and common sense has been turned on its head. Worse, this is celebrated now. And anyone that dare not celebrate it is ostracized. You’re not alone in realizing this. Society has been brainwashed and is in a deep stupor, and people will do anything to defend this new broken way of life they’ve been indoctrinated with.

    I’d like to discuss things further with you if we could somehow.

  4. Drew says:

    Thank you. This tutorial let me fix the problem right away. It was understandable, and easy to follow

  5. Bob says:

    I agree, what a pain in the eyes!
    I hate this, have been looking for months for a solution.
    Maybe I can revert to an older version of chrome browser or chrome Operating System.

    • SMB_Fan2010 says:

      You actually don’t have to. Apparently, this flag is still in Chrome, even with its latest update (v104)!

  6. Barach Obama says:

    Again, if you use Google Chrome as your web browser, Google has given answers that aren’t answers, diversions without explanations, and eventually are setting us up for the “paid” experiment. Retarded, circular, and just annoying.

  7. Owen says:

    as of 2022 Version 97.0.4692.77, it’s GONE in flags again! 😮 it’s disabled and you can’t turn it on or off in flags. why?? is it a bug :/

  8. Alexander Ewering says:

    Doesn’t work anymore.

  9. RSummers says:

    Now, how do we get rid of these obnoxious cards? It’s no longer an experiment!

    For some reason Google thinks this is actually more useful than obnoxious? I’ve seen zero value and constant distraction; it has to go.

    Please help!

    • Paking says:

      It’s so annoying. It no longer works.

    • clapham omnibus says:

      Essentially we have lost autonomy over the individual in our society, due to court rulings. Capitalism was thrust upon everyone by the United States, with the concept of individual property rights purchasing property and the right to that property because of that capitalism. The courts have chipped away at our social property rights over time with the digital world and the constant bait and switch that now exists in capitalism. It used to be that whenever you purchased something, you owned it outright. Do you really believe you own those devices? If so, why do the features and functions change all the time? Business is now in a constant flux of change, in a constant state of catch-up, because app developers are changing button locations, functions, etc., sometimes on a daily basis, costing business literally trillions yearly to stay at a certain state of output. Human productivity has continually declined since the digital age started. At no other time in capitalism, has this property, this purchased product changed its state after the purchase transaction. This is a new thing in human existence, we are literally leasing everything now, and own almost nothing. We dont get to choose what happens or exists on our phone, google apple and Microsoft and the rest are now doing it. Most people admit to not using 80% of what is preloeaded on a device, yet we cannot remove these to even store pictures of our children, we have to ‘purchase’ more storage, from the companies that prevent us from controlling our supposed property. Humans with cognitive problems, or under ability humans, their lives are now thrown into states of confusion and despair all the time now, because individuals with low intelligence, or problem communication abilities like autistics or Asperger’s, because of the way their device operates, which took them sometimes a year or more to learn and understand, suddenly changes, creating incomprehensible chaos for some of these individuals that lasts for months and years. Everyone around them has these devices, so they rightfully should to, to feel included in society.
      But developers want to be able to control and change stuff on your phone, and are currently legally allowed to change the functionality of your device. THAT YOU OWN. Lots of users have begged and pleaded for the option to recieve only security updates, because it takes some induvial longer and they have a difficult time learning and relearning, but companies like google et-al, steadfastly refuse to accommodate everyone in society, because profits. Instead they insist on having the right to impose their will upon society, and that it is the only way they can achieve a profit. If we examine google’s behavior, we know this is untrue, as they have expanded continually gutted our main streets of primary businesses, creating more and more products for free, then when a certain % of planet earth is entrenched in the product, it flip’s and become pay or your access is removed or severely limited. removing middle class families, expanding poverty, and centralizing untold amounts of power. If you did this in another industry it be a move in bad faith. If you did it your family family separation, attempted to arbitrarily change an agreement after separation, you will be destroyed by the court. But its become acceptable in the digital world.

      Right-to-repair is a another example, with all the same results.

      Also capitalism has morphed now, into surveillance capitalism, another huge moral and ethical issue which is not being dealt with, and it was never in the arrangement before the last 20 years.

      (Surveilance) capitalism now, rather than offering new and improved products based on the creativity of an individual to solve a problem, has changed so that our personal and what should globally a privacy issue, only offers leasing rights to access solutions to problems created by the same surveillance capitalism. They figured out you are having a baby in the future, because you all of a sudden started googling baby products. Ten the capitalist start feeding you unregulated advertising in the ads about things related to issues in children, insisting you have buy a certain product as the solution. Capitalism was never based upon the concept running along side it of spoon-feeding unregulated information to the consumer. It was always based upon the consumer having a problem to solve and going out and purchasing a solution. Now one new google search will literally morph the ads you receive if profits can be potentially reaped. Another issue not being dealth with is that google has admitted in court 2 things; they have learned how to manipulate the individual and their choice making, and they have learned when where and how the individual impulsively makes the choice to consume (purchase). Essentally they have learned how to control thought and the way we think about the purchases we make, and when we have an emotional crisis or just a bad day, they have learned how to identify that and place a certain ad in front us, which becomes a purchase almost 100% of the time. That is not by any definition an open free market based upon the free choice of the individual, rather it now controls what information you receive when, and with the understanding of how you feel about products in a certain states of mind, can nudge you to make a purchase 100% of the time, by presenting furthur unverified information. There is no free chioce in marketing now. It is all 100% manipulation, disguised as free choice and thought for the individual. These new concepts in this new era has brought upon us what most believe is the human end game of society due a continual decline in free thought, understanding how to think and assess information, and a scientifically researched and identified dumbing down of our collective social IQ. Its over folks, it is just a matter of time. Add to that the way we are all pushed into individual competition for employment without free market labor compensation information being publicly available to us all in order to see and understand and negotiate our compensation for trading our time, we are 80% of us no longer able to protect ourselves they way our fore fathers and previous generations of society were when 95% of humans were self employed in agriculture. And we’ve also wreckd the air, the soil, and the water. Its just a matter of time.

  10. Lee Johnson says:

    As of a Chrome update a few days ago, they have removed the option to disable tab hover cards but still give the option to disable tab hover card images – which does not stop the hover cards showing. Now a compulsory distraction from Google, it seems.

    • Rami says:

      Lol. Thanks for explaining. Any ideas on how to disable them regardless or should I expect to be stuck with them forever?

  11. deekayare says:

    Thank you thank you for the hover card info. It was so annoying in gmail.

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