15 Chrome Plugins

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If you use Google Chrome as your main web browser, you should also be taking advantage of plugins/extensions that can be made by anyone. These make the browser infinitely more powerful and will help you with everyday browsing and should save you time.

The best thing about the internet is that a lot of it is open for development; open for improvement for everyone. If there's not an extension, site, app, etc. then you can just build it yourself (or pay someone to do it for you). Google understands this and allows their browser, Chrome, to be developed and improved upon by the public through extensions.

Let me know if there are any plugins that you absolutely love so I can check them out!

  • Checker Plus for Gmail

    Gmail email checker plugin extension for Google Chrome

    Checker Plus for Gmail is my most used plugin for Chrome. For me, email is an important form of communication and speedy replies are important factor in it. My phone shoots off a notification when I get an email, but I spend quite a bit of time on the computer, so this plugin does just that: checks my email every so often and sends a notification when I get something new. There are plenty of these, but I found this one to be the most extensive, customizable, and simple. By donating the author some money, you can unlock the branding and other features — worth it!

  • AlienTube

    Ahh comments: can't live with them, can't live without them. Unfortunately, Google hasn't quite got the filtration formula that we've come to love on Reddit. Reddit's value priority system seems to be the most effective I've seen online and is certainly better than anything YouTube has to offer. To remedy this, there's a plugin (AlienTube) that replaces the YouTube comments section with those from subreddits that have posted a link to the video. You can click between the different submitted subreddits or click over to the YouTube comments if you so dare.

  • Google Dictionary

    With Google Dictionary, double click any word to get the definition right then and there. I remember in school, we'd have to look through a paper book to find the definition of a word. With this plugin, you don't even have to search for the word on a website. Just double click to get the definition right there. IT will even pronounce it if you want!

  • Hangouts

    Google Hangouts have taken over Google's free calling service, Voice. You can still call and text people for free with a unique phone number, but it's now merged with Google Hangouts. This plugin adds an item to your taskbar and will popup when someone calls or texts you. If you miss the call, you still get an email with the message and (attempted) transcript, so things haven't changed much. I'm embracing our Google overlords.

  • Keepa

    Keepa is pretty similar to camelcamelcamel, in that it gives you the price history of an item on Amazon. It also gives you the option be notified when the price lowers. It's helpful if you want to ensure you're not buying an item that just jumped up or to encourage you to buy if the item is at a low price.

  • Lazarus

    Lazarus has saved me on more than one occasion. Have you ever filled in a form only to find it timed out or you lost internet connection? This happened to me a few times when I was filling out scholarship applications. You only have to write thousands of words on multiple prompts and then have it all deleted because there was a timeout session a few times before you think of searching for such a plugin. Let me save you the headache: get the plugin, now!

  • Google Cast

    If you have a Chromecast, then you probably have Google Cast. If you don't have a Chromecast, you're probably paying too much for cable.

  • Hover Zoom

    If you frequent Reddit, this plugin will become one of your best friends. Simply, it pulls the imgur image (or other) and pops it up in your current window, so you can view images without leaving reddit. It will work on other sites or you can limit it (or block) to specific sites that you want images to pop up on.

  • Reddit Enhancement Suite

    This is another redditor must-have. Reddit Enhancement Suite (RES) extends the site extraordinarily well from the interface enhancements to simple functionalities you didn't know you wanted. Easily switch between accounts, “night” viewing mode, and a few other things.

  • Reddit Hide Sidebar

    Reddit sucks on phones because it's not “responsive,” meaning the text is small and you have to pinch to zoom in and all that jazz. Even if it does look fine on your phone, sometimes if you have side-by-side windows, it can be a little cramped. With that, there's a plugin that lets you hide the sidebar, taking advantage (on most subreddits) of the full width of your screen for the content. It conveniently adds a show/hide link by the other important links in the top right.

  • Video Speed

    Similar to SpeakIt, sometimes you just need the information, but can't or don't want to consume it the traditional method — but this time for videos. Video Speed lets you change the playback speed of both YouTube and Vimeo videos with the bracket keys, [ and ]. This is currently a function built into YouTube's player, but it's simpler with the hotkeys. I've used this to speed through school lectures in half (or less) the time than it would've taken otherwise.

  • SpeakIt

    Sometimes you can't or just don't want to read an article, but you want to know the information in it. With SpeakIt, you can have a (very robotic) voice read it to you when you select text and click the right click option.

  • Stylish

    Stylish extends all websites to your personal styling. With a little bit of CSS knowledge, you can hide specific elements, or alter others on any website.

  • Web Timer

    Web Timer just tracks the time you spend on any website and then gives you a graph. It's not particularly helpful, but it is really interesting to see how much time is spent on each website. I like to hide the button and just keep it activated so it continues to collect data and then I can view it at a later point when more time has passed.

  • Whatfont?

    Whatfont is handy when, well… you want to know what font a website is using. It's a tool-tip style overlay that gives you the font of the hovered element. Clicking the elements gives you more information, like the font size, line height, where the font is served, the hex, etc. There are over 400k users of Whatfont.