Redesigned on-screen bubbles, the sort that appear when you tap the volume or brightness buttons on your keyboard, are in the works for GNOME 42.

Right now, OSD bubbles in GNOME Shell look a lot like this:

a screenshot of the volume up pop up on ubuntu 22.04 running GNOME 42
How OSD bubbles currently look (GNOME 41)

GNOME devs consider the current implementation to be a little larger than necessary. And looking at the screenshot above it’s not an unfair assessment.

Although macOS uses big boxy pop-ups when a user bashes the volume, brightness, etc key both Windows 11 and ChromeOS use modestly sized on-screen indicators, as do most mobile OSes. Those are just as useful as GNOME’s current toasts but don’t obscure as much of the screen.

With some mockups in hand, GNOME devs got to work on creating a set of subtler OSDs. Now a merge request opened by Florian Müllner that contributes the code needed to implement them. He shares a screenshot of design changes in his merge request, which you can see below:

Proposed redesigns for GNOME 42

I like the proposed designs better, and feel they’re more of a match to the other GNOME Shell theme changes coming in GNOME 42. They remain just as functional and informative, but don’t demand as much attention as the full-size boxes.

If Ubuntu 22.04 does ship with GNOME Shell 42 as planned then these revamped ‘interstitial’ info boxes will be available for millions of Ubuntu users to enjoy on their desktops.

h/t Albertini

design gnome 42 osd