A lot of Google services have transitioned to gain the title of "apps", and the same is true of a large number of extensions for the Chrome browser. These online tools are essentially cross-platforms apps that work identically Now Google is taking another step to break out of the confines of making apps available to a single platform. Android apps are, quite rightly, associated with smartphones and tablets, but now a small number of these mobile apps are finding their way onto Chromebook.
The (usually) cheap and cheerful Windows laptop/Mac Book alternative (did someone say netbook?) can now start to benefit from a handful of well-known titles from Android devices. It is very early days but as of today there are four Android apps available to Chromebook owners -- Duolingo, Evernote, Sight Words, and Vine -- but we can expect to see this list expand over time. The quartet of crossover apps were introduced today by Ken Mixter and Josh Woodward. A short blog posts penned by the pair explains that the Chromebook support comes thanks to the App Runtime for Chrome (Beta) project.
A couple of weeks ago it looked as though Microsoft was lifting the 2GB file size limit for OneDrive users. Although no announcement was made, some users of the cloud storage service found that they were able to sync files larger than 2GB. Now, the increase in supported file size is official. OneDrive users can now upload files up to 10GB in size, bringing Microsoft's service in line with Dropbox and Google Drive. This is the latest example of Microsoft responding directly to user feedback, specifically a UserVoice thread in which users called for the 2GB file size limit to be banished.
Today Jason Moore, Group Program Manager of OneDrive, responded to the demands with a simple message: "We're proud to announce OneDrive now supports up to 10 GB files". While this is not quite the unlimited file size some people were looking for, it is a big improvement and something that will be widely welcomed. Considering the free version of OneDrive offers 15GB of storage, it is now possible to fill up your account with just two files. If you're an Office 365 customer with access to 1TB of space, you'll need to upload at least 100 files.
A shocking new report looking at online advertising shows that there has been a huge increase in the number of internet users making use of ad blocking tools. The report describes ad blocking as having gone mainstream, but it also suggests that the loss of ad revenue threatens the life of many websites.
Pagefair worked with Adobe putting together the report and found that 4.9 percent of internet users make use of ad blockers, including more than a quarter (27.6 percent) of those in the US.
Google has updated its Chrome Beta channel with the release of Google Chrome 38.0 Beta. The new release, also available as Google Chrome 38.0 Beta (64-bit) for Windows and Linux, has two major highlights.
The first is an improved -- and more visible -- way of managing and switching between multiple Chrome user profiles, while the other sees 64-bit support extended to the OS X platform.
Google’s Safe Browsing service protects users from malicious websites and warns against potentially dangerous downloads in Chrome. According to Google, over three million download warnings are being viewed every week, and because it’s available for other browsers, this technology is helping to keep 1.1 billion people safe.
From next week, Google says it will be protecting users from additional malicious software, delivering warnings whenever you attempt to download something that might try and make unwanted changes to your browser or computer.
Google seems to be on a bit of a space travel kick lately. The search-giant recently launched Google Maps for Mars and the Moon. At first, that seemed a bit odd; I mean, other than some NASA nerds, who really cares to view those terrains? Before you raise your hand and say you do, please know I did it extensively as a test, and saw nothing but rocks and craters. Quite frankly, I would sooner explore Dollywood; at least there is something to see.
Sure enough though, Google seems committed to space, as today, the company announces that users of Google Chrome can get involved with ISEE-3. Don't know what that is? I didn't either. Google explains it by saying, "originally launched in 1978 to study the Sun, it was the first spacecraft in the world to fly by a comet and has been orbiting the sun for billions of miles since 1986". Damn, it's been travelling since the last time the Mets won the World Series!
You’ve been online for hours, Chrome windows and tabs scattered everywhere, and now you need to revisit a particular page. Which would be fine, except you can’t remember which one it was, and the standard web history -- just titles and URLs -- doesn’t help at all.
Maybe you should have installed All Seeing Eye, a Chrome extension which takes a snapshot of every page you visit, indexes its text, and makes this freely searchable whenever you like.
Google has moved its dedicated 64-bit Windows build of Chrome one step closer to its final release with the launch of Google Chrome 37.0 Beta (64-bit). The new release requires Windows 7 64-bit or later to run.
The new build, which is also available in 64-bit form for Linux, moves to the beta channel, but despite media speculation, users should not assume a final release is just a few weeks away – it could yet be months before Google deems the build is stable enough for general consumption.
Bing is a wonderful search engine. My love for it is hardly a secret, as I declared my affection earlier today. However, while Internet Explorer is getting better all the time, Chrome is still my preferred browser on Windows, Linux and OS X. Unfortunately, using Bing as the default search engine on Chrome just felt wrong. I pictured Google employees spying on my web activity and shaking their heads in disappointment at my horrible crime.
Of course, that is not really happening (I hope), but still Bing on Chrome felt out of place and third-rate in comparison to Google. Today, this changes as Bing comes to new tabs in the Chrome browser.
Online security and privacy are hotter topics than ever. Just this weekend, Edward Snowden made an appearance at the Hope X 2014 hacker event, and called for those in attendance to help make encryption tools easier to use. Another fierce advocate of online privacy is the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation), and today the group released a beta version of Privacy Badger, a beautifully named extension for Chrome and Firefox designed to stop a number of tracking techniques used online. The idea of tracking cookies is something that will be familiar to most, but tracking takes many forms, including advertising and social media. Privacy Badger aims to block this tracking.
Peter Eckersley, EFF Technology Projects Director, said: "Widgets that say 'Like this page on Facebook' or 'Tweet this' often allow those companies to see what webpages you are visiting, even if you never click the widget's button. The Privacy Badger alpha would detect that, and block those widgets outright. But now Privacy Badger's beta version has gotten smarter: it can block the tracking while still giving you the option to see and click on those buttons if you so choose".
You know those annoying messages that say "Press ESC at any time to exit fullscreen. Allow fullscreen?" Here's how to never, ever see those again.
To stop the messages, simply head to Google Chrome's "content settings" section of the settings tab, scroll down to Fullscreen and click "Manage exceptions". Or you can just copy chrome://settings/contentExceptions#fullscreen into your address bar, if you don't want to go rummaging through all the confusing settings.
Google Chrome ships early versions for Windows 64-bit, promises better speed, stability and security
In a move that could -- and maybe should -- have happened years ago, Google has finally released native 64-bit Windows builds into the Chrome release channel. While not yet available to stable or beta channel users, those wishing to take full advantage of their 64-bit processors can do so with the release of Google Chrome 37 Dev and Google Chrome Canary 37.
The 64-bit builds -- according to Google -- hit the spot with its three "core principles": speed, security and stability.
Google's Chrome web browser has been actively attempting to protect its users since inception, which is a tall order given today's climate. While blocking certain things is easy, protecting customers from their own mistakes is much more difficult.
Now the company is announcing a new way to do exactly that, letting it be known that users will no longer be able to install extensions from any location other than the approved Web Store. "From now on, to protect Windows users from an attack, extensions can be installed only if they're hosted on the Chrome Web Store. With this change, extensions that were previously installed may be automatically disabled and cannot be re-enabled or re-installed until they're hosted in the Chrome Web Store", says Eric Kay, an engineering director with the search giant.
Developers, however, will be pleased to see a number of new and improved features implemented, including the ability to take more control over touch input. There’s also an undocumented switch to the Aura user interface on the Linux platform.
As something of a browser butterfly, I like to keep an eye on what's happening with browsers other than the one I'm currently using fulltime. Like many tech journalists (and non-journalists for that matter), I gave up on Internet Explorer quite some time ago, opting for Firefox initially. I also dabbled with Opera and Waterfox, amongst others, but for a number of years it was Firefox that delivered web pages to me. Sadly, I noticed that things started to slow down. New versions were more bloated and sluggish, and in the search for better performance, I ended up with Chrome. I've been a Chrome user for years now, but I was recently spurred into trying out Firefox once again.
Quite where the impetus came from, I'm not sure -- just one of those "let’s see if anything's changed" moments, I guess. Apart from little quirks like the refresh button being on the "wrong" side of the program window, Firefox seems pretty decent. I was impressed by the sharpness of the display for starters -- I had forgotten that Chrome handles high DPIs very poorly. As I'm using a Surface Pro running at 1920 x 1080, running at 150 percent DPI scaling is essential (I don’t have microscopes for eyes!) and Chrome makes everything look slightly blurry... not enough to put me off -- I'm still using it, after all -- but Firefox was a revelation!