There's an update to Chrome Beta (v39) rolling out in the Play Store, and it brings at least one notable feature—Reader Mode. You can probably guess what it is from the name. It strips out all the superfluous stuff on a page, leaving you with just the content. If you want it without waiting, we've got a download for you.
The Chrome developers have released a new version of their browser that may not have a particularly exciting changelog, but it does lead to a better browsing experience. Version 36 should make text on those websites that don't have a mobile alternative render somewhat better. This, combined with non-specified performance improvements and bug fixes, should result in more enjoyable browser use.
Text rendering on a non-mobile website using a previous version of Chrome.
Google does its part to celebrate the major US holidays, not to mention quite a few others, but April Fools' Day appears to be its favorite. The company goes all out every year, and it's already looking like 2014 may just be its very best effort yet. In addition to scattering Pokemon all over Maps, Google is now dispersing emoji all throughout Chrome.
The feature is optional, but once enabled, Chrome will replace certain words with emoji.
Artist Janet Echelman builds giant, living sculptures that respond to the elements around them. These massive works of art typically sway in the wind, flow with the water, or respond to light. This time, Echelman's work is interacting with Chrome. Her piece, built in collaboration with Google Creative Director Aaron Koblin, now descends over water and walkways from a Vancouver skyscraper, changing color in response to the input it receives from visitors on the ground.
Now you can play with Lego blocks on any device that supports Google's web browser of choice just by visiting the Build with Chrome website. Why? Because building things with blocks is fun. It's a task so intuitive that even babies can grasp it without being directed, and regardless of how old you are, the fun just doesn't go away. The tools may change, but the core concept doesn't need much in the way of innovation.
Since the dawn of Chrome Beta for Android, Google blocked it from the Play Store's search results for some reason. For those who use the browser as their default, this was a huge pain in the ass, as it meant searching Google to find a direct link to the browser when installing it on a new device. Sure, that may sound minor, but not being able to find your favorite browser from the device's Play Store search results is just annoying.
PushBullet has made a name for itself by making it painless to move files from your computer onto your phone. Now the app is taking a bold step towards making it just as easy to move data in the opposite direction. The latest update to version 11.3 introduces push-to-Chrome, a promised feature that should make it possible to get links, notes, pictures, and other content onto any computer running Chrome. The update also introduces the ability to push lists for the first time, and when you create a new push using the app, you can now select what you want to push directly.
As a Chromebook owner, I've waited a long time for Google to roll out a section in the Chrome Web Store dedicated to packaged apps. It didn't fundamentally bother me that many of the previous "apps" were just glorified bookmarks, I simply chose not to install them and desperately wanted a way to find the apps that were intended to run outside of a browser window. Today, Google has finally answered my prayers (yes, I pray to Google, don't you?), but the addition of the "For Your Desktop" section is just the beginning.
Google released the Google Keep note-taking service into the wild barely over a month ago, and now the Chrome app is here to make accessing the service as simple as using it. The app launches Google Keep in its own dedicated window, allowing you to take notes and manage to-do lists without having to search for them in a sea of tabs. There is also offline support, which could come in handy if the power goes out while you're brainstorming your next novel.