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Acer's Chromebook C720 leads with pseudo-Haswell core

Following last month's brief preview of four Chromebooks powered by a variant of Intel's Haswell processor, Acer is the first out of the gate with an update to the Chromebook C7.

The Chromebook C720 follows last year's Chromebook C710) with hardware that is better, but not necessarily a massive leap forward. The improved specifications are enough for Acer to charge more for the C720, which retails for $249.99 -- about $50 more than the C710.

The Chrome OS-fueled C720, which is available on Thursday for pre-order from Acer.com, Amazon.com, and BestBuy.com, doesn't … Read more

Earth to Google: Chromebooks still aren't mainstream

Google really, really wants you to believe that the Chromebook is a laptop brand that has something for everybody. It's mainstream, the company says.

Maybe one day, but for now, the Chromebook is less mainstream than a BlackBerry.

In terms of price, Google's dead on. You can splurge on the Pixel, a gorgeously engineered touch-screen version of the Chromebook that lacks a single USB 3.0 or full-size HDMI port but sports a $1,299 entry-level price tag.

Or you can go low-end, shelling out $199 for the dive-bar low-end Acer C7 Chromebook, the snappier $249 Samsung Series 3, … Read more

Create a shortcut to a Web app using Chrome Beta on Android

Last week Google released another build of Chrome Beta for Android. The normal bug fixes and refined features, as well as new issues were introduced in the public beta of Chrome. Perhaps one of the more interesting changes in the Chrome Beta is the introduction of a tried and true method for adding a shortcut to a Web site or Web app to your Android device's home screen.

Adding a shortcut is nothing new on Android, as we've shown you in the past, but the way it's implemented in this build (which will eventually make its way … Read more

Google uses high-end finish for $279 HP Chromebook 11

The Chromebook family just got a little bigger.

Google on Tuesday introduced the Chromebook 11 from Hewlett-Packard. The $279 laptop utilizes a Samsung dual-core Exynos processor -- commonly found in smartphones and tablets -- and it comes in different colors, features a Micro-USB port for charging, and sports an improved display. There is a 4G version, although HP hasn't announced the price of that device. It is available today.

That's a step beyond the inexpensive Chromebooks that start at $199 and are currently popular with bargain shoppers. Google's hope is that the improved specifications nudge this device … Read more

How to make Chrome's omnibox return only search suggestions

Chrome's omnibox can be a little too helpful sometimes. Begin entering in a word or phrase, and it starts autocompleting, spitting out suggested search terms, e-mails, bookmarks, and past pages from your browser history.

In many instances, however, you use the omnibox to perform a simple Web search and want to see only suggested search terms. In such an instance, enter a question mark before your search term and in the omnibox's drop-down menu, you'll see only search suggestions.

Now, you can simply click in the omnibox and key in a "?" or you can use … Read more

Tab overload slowing you down? Speed up your browsing with TGS for Chrome

Tab browsing is an amazing tool for multitaskers and ADHD-prone Web surfers everywhere. But one of the most annoying things about using Google Chrome's tab feature is the massive amount of resources it sucks up. Even though we love the idea of multiple tabs, chances are we aren't looking at every one of them at the same time. And because Chrome opens every new tab as a separate process, your system is left with very little memory for anything else. The Great Suspender, a Chrome extension, aims to solve this problem by putting on hold the tabs you … Read more

No text? No problem for Chrome's search by image

Google Chrome updated on Tuesday with some new features that will make it easier to search on desktops and easier to use on Android.

The stable channel for Chrome on desktops, version 30, now comes with "search by image." Right-click on any image, and you'll see an option to search using the image as the subject of the query. This works on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

Other changes in desktop Chrome include new Chrome Web apps application programming interfaces (APIs), which will make the Web apps function more like native mobile apps with in-app payments, saving to … Read more

How to bring back Chrome's old New Tab page

The largest element on Chrome's redesigned New Tab page -- the Google search bar -- is redundant. If you have gotten into the habit of entering search terms in Chrome's address bar, which Google refers to as the omnibox, then the Google search bar and large Google logo are just taking up space on the New Tab page.

Thankfully, you can return to the old New Tab page, and do so without installing an extension. Here's how:

1. Type or copy and paste chrome://flags into Chrome's omnibox

2. Search for "Enable Instant Extended API&… Read more

How to use Evernote's new Web Clipper for Chrome

On paper, Evernote sounds fairly mundane. An information organizer, woo-hoo. Then, after you use it for a while, you cannot imagine how you functioned without it.

For example, I use the service to preserve and organize things like recipes, instruction manuals, home-repair records, and receipts for major purchases. Most of these items were "clipped" from Web pages using the Evernote plug-in for my browser, though that process has always been a little clunky. The Evernote "clipper" basically just sucked up whatever page I was viewing, giving me few options besides adding tags.

The new Evernote Web Clipper for Google ChromeRead more

Google begins barring browser plug-ins from Chrome

In case it wasn't clear before, a Google decision has shown the writing is on the wall for plug-ins such as Java and Silverlight that for years have been used to extend what browsers can do.

Starting in January 2014, Google will ban all but the most widely used browser plug-ins in favor of programming methods that use standards built directly into the Web, Chrome security engineer Justin Schuh announced in a blog post Monday. And those plug-ins will be barred "over the coming year," he said.

Most Chrome plug-ins (not to be confused with the lighter-weight … Read more