Google Chrome needs to have the RAM management issues addressed but it hasn’t really stopped it from being arguably the best browser, even more so when you factor in the power of Chrome Extensions.
I’ve tried to use a mixture of personal experience and team recommendations to create a short but sweet list of extensions that will make your online experience safer, quicker, easier and generally more productive to boot.
Some I’ve been using for years, others I’ve only found recently, so there will be a fair few that potentially won’t be new to some readers out there. Naturally, we want to hear your own, so make sure you comment below telling us what Google Chrome extensions you can’t live without.
We would always recommend a decent ad blocking extension too for many of the sites with intrusive ads — although we do our utmost to ensure that our ads are clean, clear and don’t affect your browsing experience. There are plenty of options, so we won’t insult your intelligence by including one on our list.
Coupon collectors and discount divas rejoice as this is a powerful shopping tool that automatically adds any price-lowering discount code available on selected online stores to your basket, therefore saving you money.
It’s not completely infallible, as there are reviews on the extension page itself that have had codes not appear even after manually searching the web to find them. With that said, it does work well and the coin system rewards you with further discounts for using the service in a rebate or cashback system.
Click & Clean
Click & Clean is a great tool for tidying up a few things, especially your browsing history, browser cache, cookies and your download history too. It doesn’t exactly look great but it’s a utility tool that really helps your browser stay slim and not bloating out — still an issue with Chrome in 2019.
You can even use the extension to scan for malware, which is neat if you often head to the darker, dingy parts of the internet and want to have at least some form of web protection. being able to clear your history and cache from one interface is also a neat and tidy addition to your browser. The cache clearing system is great for keeping your Chrome app from really starting to eat into your hard drive space.
This one most definitely isn’t new but I personally do use it every single day to share URLs quickly. If you’re not familiar with Bitly service, it is a free link shortening service that turns any link into a small, serviceable and infinitely more shareable option.
If you want analytical data too, this is a great way to see how your links are performing. Whilst I wouldn’t say it was essential, it’s just a nice, neat and tidy way to send links in emails, texts or when hyperlinking to another website within a webpage.
Dark Night Mode
Don’t let the review score on this extension put you off, it works well and is a great way to add a global dark mode to almost the entire internet. It’s great for those who are not a fan of being blinded by bright white web pages — especially at night.
You can make some simple tweaks to the overall color and brightness of the dark mode, which I haven’t messed around with all too much. Then there is the ability to whitelist specific sites if the dark mode is not needed or a little janky. Like any global dark modes, it isn’t perfect but it really does make a difference on vast portions of the internet — Facebook being prime example.
I’ve recently reinstalled this on my desktop but it persists on my laptop as my main Chrome entrance tab (and does play nice with another extension further on in this list if you want both installed).
Momentum adds a nice to get a quick overview of your day, create a to-do list and have nice backgrounds and inspirational quotes pop up when you open a new tab. Then you also can add your bookmarks bar here too if you would prefer to minimize this and have it displayed within your new tab.
There is a paid-for Plus version that costs $3.33 per month, which adds further photo and to-list integration options alongside world clocks but it’s not personally something I felt the need to bother investing in.
Google Mail Checker
Now for me, this is an essential addition, even more so if you have a Gmail account. It’s a very basic extension that gives you a quick link to your Gmail account and a badge to show how many unread emails you currently have in your inbox or inboxes.
Best of all, this is the only official Google extension on my list, which means support is great. I’ve never had a problem and I’ve had it installed since it became available in late 2012. There are other options like Checker Plus for Gmail that add notifications but I like how simple and unobtrusive this extension is.
It just sits out of the way and then updates as emails fall into your inbox, then just click the button to head directly to your inbox. I honestly love it.
As good as Chrome is, the search history management is woeful. So an extension like Better History makes it much easier to search, edit and delete pages you’ve been on across more than just one device.
Being able to select search history for a specific day is a massive help if you want to find something quickly. The left to right date management is much better than the stock scroll method and makes it infinitely less confusing and way less frustrating. Being able to just delete a day with one click is also a godsend in my eyes.
If you often head into your search history or what better fine controls then Better History is one of the best options out there in my opinion.
The Great Suspender
Where has The Great Suspender been all my life?! It is an amazing addition to the resource-hogging browser that Google Chrome has become and therefore I would say an essential on especially older PCs, laptops and Macs that have limited processing power and especially low RAM capacity.
How it works is by suspending any background tabs that you are not currently using, this can cause a page to reload when you return to it but when connection speeds are good enough, the PC hardware is what really slows down your web experience. There are some extra tools within this extension including a whitelist for music and pre-selected apps. You can also tweak how long before a tab gets suspended too, which can be adjusted up to two weeks (oddly).
If you have a family member machine that is constantly bogged down when using Chrome, this could be a great little addition.
This is one that I heard of via a friend of mine, who after discussing my own productivity and workflow, they mentioned about this neat pre-launcher that might save you a ton of time over the course of a week, month and year. It’s very similar to another option called Workona but I like how simple Workspaces is by comparison, plus it has a nice dark theme.
Workspace Launcher essentially allows you to create a preset number of sites that will launch when you load each saved setting. So for instance, when you open Chrome first thing in a morning, check your blogs, news sites and email, just create a workspace and then instead of heading to the search bar, these tabs will instantly be loaded in the background.
It’s really easy to set up too. First, name your workspace, then just open the tabs that you want to launch when you open Chrome and save. Once you relaunch Chrome or open a new tab you can quickly launch into all of those web pages.
I’ve been using it to create specific workspaces for specific tasks and it such a time saver!
If you’re a child of the 90s then this might be a great little customization extension for your Chrome experience. Custom Cursor basically allows you to set your cursor when in Chrome to whatever you want.
There is a massive library online already, this is a pretty popular extension but if you don’t see one that you really like then you can even upload your own creations. Althought it’s worth noting that your custom cursor won’t work on every single site.
As we mentioned earlier in this rundown, if you have any extensions that you cannot get by without, we’d love to hear from you. Let us know what you think we should check out in our comments section.
We want to know exactly what Google Chrome Extensions you simply cannot live without. So don’t be shy let us know down there.
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