You can now install free Chrome Web Store apps without a Google account

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Casual Chrome users rejoice! You can now install free apps without having to sign into the Chrome Web Store. Revealed by platform evangelist François Beaufort, this new option lets people pick up software without the need of a Google account. This type of setup could be useful to people who haven’t fully committed to using Mountain View’s web browser on a full-time basis.

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Google no longer accepting legacy packaged Chrome apps, support completely ending in June of 2015

 

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In 2010 Google took steps towards separating its Chrome browser and the way its apps operated. Unlike traditional web-based applications, the software didn’t have URLs or navigation buttons, making it feel more like native desktop programs. This new breed of Chrome apps were also capable of working offline, connecting with peripherals and delivering desktop notifications.

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Google kicking toolbars, “multipurpose extensions” out of the Chrome Web Store

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Google’s Chromium Blog just announced intentions of the search engine giant to knock out toolbars and “multipurpose extensions” out of the Chrome Web Store. The update to the policy is basically summed up as: “extensions in the Chrome Web Store must have a single purpose that is narrow and easy-to-understand.” That sounds simple enough, no?

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Google releases ‘a new breed of Chrome apps,’ now available to all Mac users

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Looking back at late September, Google released Chrome Apps which should not be confused with Chrome OS or Chrome’s browser apps. These ‘Chrome Apps’ are full-fledged applications complete with offline support and include apps like Any.do, Pocket, and many more available in the “For your desktop” collection in the Chrome Web Store.

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How to enable the Google+ Photos Chrome app on Mac & PC

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Last month we reported that Google’s slick new “Google+ Photos” app that launched exclusively on the Chromebook Pixel could possibly be making its way to Mac & PC. The proof came from a newly posted listing on the Chrome Web Store that made references to auto-uploading features specifically for OS X and Windows. Unfortunately, launching the app would give users a “not supported on this platform” error message. While Google has yet to officially launch the Mac and PC versions of the Chrome app, there is a way to bypass the error message and enable the app now. Read more

Google updates Gmail web app with new UI inspired by iOS apps, improved search & Calendar integration

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Google announced today that it updated the mobile web app for Gmail and the Gmail Offline Chrome app with a refreshed UI and new features similar to recent enhancements to its iOS apps. On top of the redesigned visuals, Google also included improvements to search and Google Calendar integration:

Today we’re rolling out a similar refreshed look to the Gmail mobile web app as well as Gmail Offline (http://goo.gl/0f1ae) that includes many of these same changes. Try it out at gmail.com in the browser of your Android, iOS, Blackberry or Kindle Fire device.

Google noted it decided to implement a design for its web apps similar to its iOS offerings after receiving positive feedback since first launching the new iOS design in December.

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Google launches ‘Save to Drive’ Chrome extension & enhanced photo viewer for Google Drive

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Google today announced on Google+ that it is introducing a new Chrome extension that will allow users to save content from on the web directly to their Google Drive account. Using the new Chrome extension, users will be able to select which part of a webpage they want to save, such as “an image of a page, the HTML source code, or a Web archive.” Once installed, users will also get an option to save images, links, or files directly to Drive when right clicking.

commentsonimagesGoogle also explained it has made enhancements to the photo viewer in Google Drive that allows users to zoom, fit to page, and comment:

We’ve also added a few new ways to work with images that are already stored in Drive. You can now zoom by scrolling or using the new fit to page and 100% buttons. And if you have something to say about a specific part of an image, you can select a region and add a comment to it.

The Google Drive Chrome extension is available from the Chrome Web Store here.

Google+ integration debuts on Chrome Web Store

The Chrome Web Store is now Google+ integrated.

“You can now share all of your favorite Chrome Web Store items with people in your Google+ circles by finding them in the Chrome Web Store and clicking the +1 button located in their store detail page,” wrote Software Engineer Hui Guo on the official Google Chrome blog.

Users can also review app, extension, and theme recommendations from friends in their Google+ circles by hitting up the ‘From your circles’ link under the left category menu on the Chrome Web store. If apps have been +1’d by people in a user’s circles, the indication will appear respectively on the Chrome Web Store to help folks pick an app.  Those new to Google+ will notice suggestions from the Chrome team instead.

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Google says more than 500 districts in US and Europe use Chromebooks actively

Google just revealed over 500 school districts in the United States and Europe use Chromebooks on a regular basis, while also naming a few new districts to adopt the technology in both North Carolina and Wisconsin.

In a post on the Official Google Blog, which is appropriately titled “In schools, all you need is web,” Google talked about the functionality of Chromebooks coupled with Google Apps and educational apps available on the Chrome Web Store. The company clearly wants the world to know its marketplace and lineup of notebooks are ideal for teaching, learning, and exploring the Web.

“There are tens of thousands of apps in the Chrome Web Store, and today we’re adding some new ones: ST Math, VoiceThread and Acheive3000,” wrote Chromebooks for Education Product Manager Vidya Nagarajan. “To give you an idea of what’s possible on the web: Leyden High School District from Illinois is rolling out Chromebooks to their 3,500 students and are using apps like WeVideo,EasyBib, Vernier Labquest2, SlideRocket, Geogebra and Pearson’s OpenClass as part of their 1-to-1 learning initiative.”

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