For many here, Web Intents need no introduction. For others, let me start with a short and easy to understand intro.
Ever used “Share” option in Android? Noticed how any new app you install show up in that list? How is it possible for all these applications to work together, or say interconnected in one way?
That’s intents right there.
What if we can bring the same feature to your browser? Say, you write an app for Chrome, and just say, you want to be listed in intents, you show up in that list. Here is the official description.
Users use many different services on the web to handle their day to day tasks, such as sharing images, editing documents and listening to music. They expect their applications to be connected and to work together seamlessly.
It is impossible for developers to anticipate every new service and to integrate with every existing external service that their users prefer, and thus they must choose to integrate with a few select APIs at great expense to the developer.
Web Intents solves this. Web Intents is a framework for client-side service discovery and inter-application communication. Services register their intention to be able to handle an action on the user’s behalf. Applications request to start an Action of a certain verb (share, edit, view, pick etc.) and the system will find the appropriate Services for the user to use based on the user’s preference.
How Are They Different From Extensions
Simple, easy to implement. No need for extra coding for making an extension communicate with another. I am sure developers will have so much to say about this. Right guys?
Let’s Get To The List
webintents.org team has added some webintents extensions for users to try out. I found 13 of them for you. There were couple of others, but I am listing only those from webintents.org here.
- Save to Instapaper :
- Share to Reddit™
- Share to Digg™:
- Save to Box:
- Save to ReadItLater:
- Shorten with Goo.gl:
- Shorten with Bit.ly:
- Share to Blogger™:
- Share to Delicious™:
- Share to LinkedIn™:
- Share to Tumblr™:
- Share to Gmail™:
- Share Link to Twitter™:
How To Use Web Intents on Google Chrome
Unfortunately, I couldn’t find demos to use all of these intents. I will update it as soon as I find them. Here is how you can try web intents now.
Enable Web Intents
Here is how to enable web intents on Chrome. Go to settings page and simple search for “intents”. Make sure that you have “Allow Web Intents to enable me to connect my applications.” checked.
Now, visit this demo page http://demos.webintents.org/ . Enter a web address (complete with http://) and click “Save”. You will get a popup asking you to pick one of the intents, and add it to Chrome. Click add, and you will be redirected to the “Save” page. Its simple, try it out!
Hope you enjoyed a preview of the future web. If you have more info to add, demos to share, jump in.