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“Easy Unlock” The “Unlock Your Chromebook When Phone is Near” Thing Goes Live for Android 5.0 Users

Easy Unlock, the Chrome OS + Android feature that unlocks your Chrome OS devices when your Android phone is near, has started working for some users.

For now, we know that , who has an Android Lollipop 5.0 phone and a Chromebook with Dev channel on it has tested this successfully.

Here are some screenshots:

chromebook  Easy Unlock The Unlock Your Chromebook When Phone is Near Thing Goes Live for  Android 5.0 Users

chromebook  Easy Unlock The Unlock Your Chromebook When Phone is Near Thing Goes Live for  Android 5.0 Users

The Dev channel of Chrome OS has this enabled by default now. There is a flag to disable this if you want to (which of course will go away sometime in the future).

Now, we are left with questions. When will this launch for everyone. Will there be an app, or is this part of the Android 5.0 operating system? If it is, will that make this Android 5.0 and up only?

Source:  via OMG Chrome.

Right Click And Pin Your Google Drive Folders on Your Chromebook’s Files App

Here is a quick tip from  for heavy Google Drive users on Chromebook, you can right click any folder  inside your Google Drive account and create a shortcut for easy access.

You can do this for your sub-folders too, which makes this feature even more useful. If you have a folder that you frequently access, but is couple of levels deep (like I do most of the times;  Documents > Home > Bills > April, that kind of stuff) this is going to help you a lot.

Just right click any Google Drive folder from the side bar of Files app, and select “Create Shortcut”. For now, that is the only option available when you right click, so do not worry about choosing the correct option!

chromebook  Right Click And Pin Your Google Drive Folders on Your Chromebooks Files App

Try it! and let me know if you liked it!

Thank you! !

Clarisketch, Web2go, Remind and Lensoo Create Are the Latest Android Apps Available on Chrome OS

Google is adding more Android apps to the Chrome Web Store, making them available to Chromebook users. I am not sure if they are converting/porting the most asked Android apps from their survey, because these are not the most-asked-for apps.

chrome news  Clarisketch, Web2go, Remind and Lensoo Create Are the Latest Android Apps Available on Chrome OS

Four new Android apps that made it to Chrome OS are:

  • Clarisketch: Creating messages by combining speech, drawing and photos
  • Web2go: Innovative news app that lets you listen to your own choice of news websites and magazines
  • Remind: Remind (formerly Remind101) offers teachers a free, safe and simple way to instantly text students and parents.
  • Lensoo Create: Lensoo Create turns your Chromebook into a virtual whiteboard with voice recording, video and smooth digital writing.

Google, I am waiting for Flipboard chrome news  Clarisketch, Web2go, Remind and Lensoo Create Are the Latest Android Apps Available on Chrome OS

via OMG Chrome.

 

Palettab Puts Interesting Fonts and Color Schemes On Chrome’s New Tab Page

This one is going to be a designers’ favorite. This Chrome extension puts awesome color schemes from colourlovers.com on your New Tab Page, along with nice web fonts. And yes, this is designer beautifully.

Palettab is a chrome extension to help you discover new fonts and awesome color collections every time you hit the new tab button.

The colors and fonts take up most of the space on the new tab page. There is just a refresh button on the top, to view more interesting stuff, or just browse away and you’ll get a new one when you open the new tab page next time.

chrome extensions  Palettab Puts Interesting Fonts and Color Schemes On Chromes New Tab Page

The only thing I would love to see change is this. We spend just a fraction of a second on the new tab page before typing in a URL. If the extension keeps one set of colors and fonts pre-loaded, it will make a better experience.

This is a fun discovery project by Tim and Claudio. (Good job guys!)

Download the extension from here.

“Mini Mirror” Puts Webcam Video On Your Desktop While Screencasting from Your Chromebook

Want to screencast from your Chromebook like a pro, I mean, with your webcam video on the corner explaining your session? Mini Mirror is a Chrome packaged app for that job.

I am talking about getting something like this while screencasting from your Chromebook:

chrome extensions  Mini Mirror Puts Webcam Video On Your Desktop While Screencasting from Your Chromebook

And….. here is a video demo:

According to the developer, these are the features that set this app apart from the competition:

  • Move the webcam Feed in any position while keeping it always visible (you can hide it by clicking on the icon in the task bar.
  • The video feed can be resized by switching the application in frame mode, when you are done switch back to borderless

And, the code is available on Github if you want to take a look. This is always a good sign!

Enough with the introductions. Here is the download link!

The New Samsung Chromebook 2 is Tough, Has Aluminum Reinforcement

Remember I was not really impressed with the Samsung Chromebook 2? Well, here is a piece of info about these Chromebooks that might slightly change my opinion.

Samsung Chromebook 2 is built for schools and students and has extra-sturdy chassis to protect the rough handling.

chromebook  The New Samsung Chromebook 2 is Tough, Has Aluminum Reinforcement

Here are some highlights from this PC World article:

Nearly 1.4 million Samsung Chromebooks are deployed in U.S. schools, but these devices were designed for casual users, not rambunctious children. Samsung product manager David Ng admitted his company “needed to make the device more durable” for the education market. Aluminum reinforces the display panel, the corners of the chassis, and other vulnerable points. “Just try flexing the LED panel,” Ng dared me. I did: It’s quite stiff, though the thick bezel is ugly. Nevertheless, this level of build quality should help the device’s retail reputation as well.

The USB ports have electrostatic shock protection to help them survive repeated plugging and unplugging of devices.

The official Samsung page for this Chromebook has two videos showing off the device, and the second one shows a tear down. I couldn’t get those videos to embed so, watch them here.

Think this is something that you might want to buy? This Chromebook is expected to be released on October 20. You can pre-order it here.

Thanks Alvin Chin for the official product page link!

Amazon is Selling Chromecast for $28. Firefox for Android Beta Gets Tab Mirroring for Chromecast #chromeweekender

Happy weekend guys! I had the #chromeweekender scheduled to auto-publish from WordPress, but something went wrong. That’s why you saw the post on Monday (after I fixed it up and published manually)

chrome news  Amazon is Selling Chromecast for $28. Firefox for Android Beta Gets Tab Mirroring for Chromecast #chromeweekender

In another news, I am working with one of my favorite WordPress theme designers for a custom design for Chrome Story. A few more weeks, and you will see it live here.

Now, here is this week’s list. Let’s start with some offers and new Chromebooks.

Google’s Head of Engineering for Android Now Handles Chrome OS Too

Sundar Pichai has been heading Chrome and Android for a while now, trying to make both platforms work together better. Here is one more move from Google in the same direction.

According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, Google has appointed its vice president of Android engineering to oversee its Chrome OS engineering teams as well. Hiroshi Lockheimer, who oversees Android now has the responsibility of Chrome OS as well.

Google is preparing Chrome OS to support Android apps. Plus there are efforts to make both platforms work together, say, notifications from your phone showing up on your Chromebook. When Google redesigns Chrome OS with material design, things will start looking a lot similar on both platforms.

chrome news  Googles Head of Engineering for Android Now Handles Chrome OS Too

With all these changes, bringing Android and Chrome OS engineering teams under the same boss makes lot of sense.

via The Verge.

Samsung Launches Chromebook 2 Variant with Bay Trail for $250

Let me start this post with this unusual note. Sorry Brent Sullivan. I know that you told me about this a few days back, and I was too lazy to follow up with you on that Amazon link for this new Chromebook!

Alright.

So, Samsung still makes Chromebooks. They are adding live video support for Chromebook users. Other OEMs have caught up with or beat Samsung in the Chromebook game, but they have started showing signs of a come back.

The original Samsung Chromebook with the ARM chip was a success. At $249, this was the poster child of Chromebooks for a long time and Google promoted it really well.

Then came the Samsung Chromebook 2 with ARM processor, better screen and the fake leather from Galaxy Note series. Things didn’t workout as Samsung had expected it to. People had moved on from ARM Chromebooks, at least temporarily (Tegra K1 Chromebooks are getting good response these days), and there were many new OEMs and more options to customers.

Samsung was late to respond to this. (At least they didn’t too fast and too many times as HP did!). This week, they are releasing a Chromebook 2 variant with a Bay Trail chip and a $249.99 price tag.

  • Intel Celeron 2.16 GHz
  • 2 GB DDR3L SDRAM
  • 16 GB Solid-State Drive
  • 11.6-Inch Screen, Intel HD Graphics
  • 8-hour battery life

Specs look okaysih. But here is the problem. Bay Trail Chromebooks are not doing as good as Haswell Chromebooks. At least that is what I sense from reading comments from many people on my network. Keeping that in mind, I am doubtful about how good this Chromebook 2 variant will do.

chromebook  Samsung Launches Chromebook 2 Variant with Bay Trail for $250

Price is an attraction here, yes. Design is not very compelling to me, but I have many Chromies appreciating the fake leather on this guy. So, we really have wait and watch how this goes.

This Chromebook is expected to be released on October 20. You can pre-order it here.

Refurbished Chromecast Available from Groupon for $25 [Deal]

Groupon has a “limited quantity” deal going on for Chromecast giving you a $10 discount.

At the original retail price of $35, Chromecast is already pretty affordable, but if you have been waiting for the price to come down to buy one, or to buy couple of extra pieces for some sort of experiment, this is your chance!

chromecast  Refurbished Chromecast Available from Groupon for $25 [Deal]

Here is the Groupon link.

And do not forget to say thanks to Brent Sullivan!