Browser extensions are a double-edged sword. They can greatly enhance your browsing sessions with grammar checks, price comparisons, memory optimizations, or by blocking unwanted content and annoyances. But often enough, extensions turn out to be security risks, with a recent example being The Great Suspender, a RAM-saving extension that fell from grace after its original developer sold it.
When Mozilla launched its completely rewritten Firefox for Android, we found a lot of things to like, but where there is light, there's also shadow. Due to some unfinished APIs, add-on support is severely limited, so as of now, only nine hand-picked extensions are available for Mozilla's mobile browser. The situation is improving a bit with the lastet stable Firefox release, version 83. Ten more add-ons are making their way into the new version of the mobile browser.
Extensions are among Google Chrome's most powerful tools, but it can be hard to weed out the ones that are actually good and helpful versus those that might be resource hogs or woefully outdated. And while web apps are great, extensions work across basically the entirety of the Chrome browser, making them, in a way, the "native" apps of Chromebooks. We know a thing or two about doing work on the web (hi, welcome to our blog!), and we all tend to use Google Chrome for a lot of that work. We've picked up a few extensions along the way that we think you're going to love, so here are 10 of our favorites for working smarter, not harder.
The coronavirus pandemic ruffled Chrome and Chrome OS releases quite a bit, so Google paused updates for a short time, even omitting version 82 altogether. But now the company is getting back on track and has announced the release of Chrome OS 83. It'll start rolling out to first people this week, and it brings a whole slew of neat improvements to the table. None of them are as big as the addition of gesture navigation we've seen in version 81, though.
The Chrome Web Store is still something of a wild west — seemingly every month, there's a story about some popular extension stealing user data or doing something else it's not supposed to do. Google has already made several policy changes lately, and its next target is spammy extensions.
Browser extensions have always been a two-edged sword. On the one hand, they offer invaluable services to power users by enabling them to customize their web surfing experience as needed, but on the other hand, I still remember the toolbars of old and how some more regular users added dozens to their browsers, bugging down their machines. Many people don't even know that they've installed them, as they're offered with deceptive tactics. Thus, Google has already removed the often-abused inline installation option from Chromium last year. And on Thursday, the company also announced that it's further restricting deceptive installation tactics.
Firefox faced a major cybersecurity-related outage this weekend that caused all browser add-ons, themes, search engines, and language packs to be disabled, which left many Tor users potentially exposed to tracking. However, Mozilla was quick to react and published an update to version 66.0.4 on Android and Desktop OSs that reinstated said features yesterday.