Notifications will show up outside the browser window on the bottom-right of the user’s display screen, and could be fed in from the likes of Gmail, Google Calendar, Spotify and your own RSS reader.

“We’ve created these notifications to be wonderful, useful and engaging,” says Google. “They could show formatted text and pictures, and could include actions immediately inside the pop-up .

Industry commentators are likely to view this growth of notifications as Google’s try to bring Google Now (a mobile only program that predicts uses conduct to provide tips and advice) to the desktop. Nevertheless, notifications may also be massively useful to developers, who could use the program to greatly expand the functionality of their applications.

In their guidance to developers Google stated: “Apart from the basic notification type shown above, you could use other formats such as picture to present a preview of an picture within the notification or list to coalesce several notifications from your own application into a single one.”

“For instance, a mail application could show multiple unread emails in a single notification making use of the list type. You could also specify different goals for notifications that figure out how long they remain on the screen before getting into the notification center where they carry on living until dismissed by the application or user.”