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Friday, August 29, 2014

Free Google Chrome Apps- How to Select the Best from Thousands of Choices for Games, Business and Home

Surfing the web (do we still say that?) is fun and easy.

But, there's more to the internet than traveling from website to website. Chances are, you got to this blog by using the Google Chrome browser. Other browsers like Safari (Apple) and Explorer (Microsoft) work just fine, but for sheer popularity around the world, Google Chrome comes out on top.

However, it's time to stop thinking of Chrome as just a way to get from here to there on the interwebs. For some time now, Chrome has offered apps for their browser, just like a smartphone has apps to improve your phone experience.

You can find the Chrome Web Store here. Once you arrive, you'll discover thousands of applications optimized to work within the Chrome browser. Just like a smartphone, you'll find apps for games, education, productivity and the like. Because most people use the Chrome browser on a larger device like a laptop or desktop computer, the apps tend to be specialized for use on a larger screen. You'll see apps for video editing, business presentations, product design, TV watching and much more.
Keep this app away from my wife

This can be especially helpful if you're seeking some assistance with home remodeling, for example. There are several apps that allow you to create a 3D view of your home. This way, you'll be better able to envision your changes by removing a wall, replacing carpet with hardwood, painting the dining room green, etc. and do it all within the app before you ever pick up a hammer. Roomstyler 3D is one typical app for this kind of project in the Chrome Web Store.

Like I said before though, you can also find popular games like Angry Birds, Cut the Rope and others. They play just like the phone or tablet versions, but are modified to use your keyboard for control.

The good news is most of the apps are free. However, "free" can be a vague and loose term, with different definitions from developer to developer. Some may give you the whole program for no money at all. Others may provide part of the program, but want you to pay for the rest (for example, an app may allow you to design a business card, but charge you to print it). And still others allow you to download the app for free only, but to use any of it at all, you must pay up first.

So how do you find a great app for you when there are many to choose from? Read and pay attention to the reviews that come with every app. Chrome ranks apps on a five-star system and if you find an app with 173 reviews and an average four-star ranking, that usually means the app is a good one. However, is you see an app with 173 reviews and 1 1/2 stars, you'll probably want to move on to the next selection. Also, be sure to read the reviews, both good and bad, to get an overall feel for the product and it's suitability for you and your needs.

Lastly, in the name of fairness, both Explorer and Safari do have quality app stores that provide the same services as Chrome, so check them out too. If you do, I think you'll enrich your internet experience, discover some new ideas and maybe even play a game or two.

After all, isn't that why we all use the internet super highway (do we still use that term?)?

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