Changes to Microsoft Family make it possible to block Chrome and Firefox in Windows 10 Anniversary Update
Windows 10 Anniversary Update introduced a number of changes to the operating system, and Microsoft has started to email users about changes to Microsoft family settings. As the name implies, this is about keeping things family-safe, family-friendly, but one of the changes is unlikely to go down well with rivals.
While new Microsoft family options make it easier to place limits on what children are able to do with a computer, a controversial option forces the use of Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge. Microsoft has made it possible to block the use of Chrome, Firefox and other rival browsers.
Google has come to the realization that hardly anyone is using Chrome apps. As such, the company plans to phase out support for the apps on Windows, Mac and Linux over the next couple of years.
While admitting that packaged apps are used by just 1 percent of users of the three platforms, Google says that the decision comes after a drive to integrate the feature of apps into web standards. Chrome apps will live on in Chrome OS "for the foreseeable future", but a wind-down timetable has been set out for everyone else.
If you're working with bleeding edge Chrome for Android, you can experiment with an updated version of the New Tab page. Anyone with Chrome Dev or Beta installed can toggle a settings flag to bring extra content to new tabs.
The updated New Tab page features -- in addition to your most frequently visited sites and a list of recent bookmarks -- a collection of suggested news stories, similar to those found on Google Now cards.
It may seem logical that, when browsing, the backspace key would work to take you back to a previous web page. However, that isn't the case with Google Chrome. Although this was an option in the browser previously, Google chose to remove it.
The company has seen the light now however, and is bringing the feature back, no pun intended, although it isn't changing the browser's default behavior.
Following the lead of Apple with Safari in macOS Sierra, and Mozilla with Firefox, Google has announced that Chrome will begin to block Flash content. Starting with Chrome 53 in September, Google will "de-emphasize Flash in favor of HTML5".
Google says that the decision has been made to improve security, performance, and battery life, and it builds on an earlier change that made some Flash content click-to-play rather than loading it by default.
Google is pushing out Chrome 52 for Android, and the big news with this release relates to video. With video being such a massive component of internet traffic, it is perfectly natural for Google to focus on this area, and the company says that improvements have been made to battery consumption and loading times.
There is a marked shift of focus to speed and power efficiency -- compared to the desktop where the focus has long been quality over everything else.
Speedtest is a free Chrome extension which allows testing your internet connection speeds and web page download time. It gives you access to the core of the Speedtest.net website in a click or two, wherever you are on the web.
Click Speedtest’s icon at any time and a panel appears. By default this displays the name of the currently displayed page, and the time it took to load.
Malware isn’t just about native executables or rogue apps, not any more -- a malicious browser extension can cause almost as many problems on all your devices at once.
With the right permissions, for example, your new Chrome add-on could steal your user credentials, post as you on social media, read your emails, help launch a DDoS attack, and more.
You’re building a website, presentation, maybe a CV listing your many coding skills, and would like some kind of graphic to illustrate that section. But what should it be?
Forget the usual clipart, install the Chrome app Marmoset instead, and it’ll help you create a stylish presentation-ready code snapshot in seconds.
Flash is seen, quite rightly, as the scourge of the internet, and for some time there has been a vocal movement to eradicate all traces of it. Following the lead of Google Chrome and upcoming versions of Safari, Mozilla is taking the step of blocking Flash content from Firefox that is "not essential to the user experience".
It's part of the company's drive to reduce reliance on Flash, whilst recognizing that there is still a need to provide a degree of support for "legacy Flash content". Mozilla has taken the decision to ditch Flash in a bid to improve browser performance, boost security and improve battery life on mobile devices.
Microsoft has been shouting about Edge a lot as of late. Not happy with claiming that it is the most battery-friendly of the main web browsers, the company has also made much of Edge's 1080p support for Netflix.
In the latest twist, Microsoft switches tack, instead using pop up messages in Windows 10 to badmouth Chrome and promote Edge. The pop up rams home the idea that Chrome is a battery hog and suggests switching to Microsoft Edge to increase longevity.
Internet Explorer has been much-maligned over the years, and Microsoft Edge sees the Redmond company trying to shake off the shackles of the past. Its latest marketing push finds Microsoft claiming that Edge is the best desktop web browser for Netflix viewing.
The reason? In addition to claims about greater battery efficiency, Microsoft's killer blow is that Edge is the only of the main desktop browsers to support 1080p viewing. It might seem like a surprising and audacious claim, but the test bears it out. Microsoft Edge has a serious unique selling point.
Vector graphics editors are often bulky desktop applications, aimed very much at design experts, but Inker is very different. The package is a simple Chrome app, easy enough for almost anyone to use, and ideal for creating quick vector designs on a tablet which you can then reuse elsewhere.
The drawing tools cover the basics only, with a freehand pen, rectangles, ellipses, and text.
If you've been using a browser extension to add a casting option to Chrome, you could think about uninstalling it. Google is currently rolling out an update to the desktop version of its web browser.
The feature is making its way to Chrome 51 and can be accessed by right clicking either an open tab or the browser's hamburger menu. Should you ditch the extension, though? It really depends on your needs...
Facebook is all about sharing and consuming, and today the social network launches two new extensions for the Chrome browser that make it easy to do both. The Share to Facebook and Save to Facebook extensions do very much what you would expect, encouraging not only sharing, but also the use of Facebook as a bookmarking tool for articles you want to read later.
As well as these two extensions, Facebook is also rolling out redesigned Social Plugin buttons. The Like button that you see adorning so many websites is getting a modern makeover, losing the iconic Facebook 'f' logo, and gaining an emoji-lover-friendly thumbs up icon instead.