12 New Chrome Extensions You’ll Want in 2016

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Every year, I have the urge to have a passionate fling with Firefox. But being the player that I am, I soon tire of the foxy browser, and I make my way back to my true mistress, Google Chrome. She always takes me back with open arms.

Chrome lures me back for many reasons, but the main one is probably the fact that the extensions are far more wide ranging and of a higher quality. A lot of fantastic extensions also do not have a Firefox sibling, which makes it very frustrating if you are trying and failing to stay with Firefox.

Below are 12 extensions which prove my point, that Chrome is the browser to stick with. You will definitely want to try these out.

Boomerang Calendar

You may have heard of the insanely useful Boomerang for Gmail, which enables you to do things such as schedule your emails to go out at a certain time, and bring archived emails back to the inbox on a date you specify. Now there is Boomerang Calendar, which helps you with your overflowing schedule. No more double-booking!

After installing, go to your Gmail inbox. You will be asked to let Boomerang Calendar access your Google calendar. Afterwards, at the bottom of a new email window, you will see three new buttons at the end.

boomerang1

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One is for “Suggest Meeting“, second is “Share Next Few Days“, and the third one is “Share Next Week’s Availability“. So if we click “Suggest Meeting“, your calendar will come up and you should click three possible meeting times.

boomerang2

Fill in the meeting details on the right-hand side, and then click “Insert into email“.

boomerang3

The recipient merely clicks the time slot suitable for them, and it is then automatically inserted into both your calendar and theirs. Simple. Who needs a PA when you have Chrome doing all the heavy lifting?

Trump Reactions

trump3

Here’s a fun one, especially since this year is the US Presidential election season.

With the recent introduction of Facebook Reactions, some people have become instant fans, while others have hated it. If you are one of the former, and you are a US Republican, you may like to replace the standard FB Reactions with Donald Trump instead.

trumpreactions

And before you get your knickers in a twist and accuse us of being partisan in an election, here’s the same extension but this time, for Bernie Sanders. We here like to swing both left and right.

berniesandersreactions

Or if Hillary is your gal, even she has an extension for Reactions. Sorry to all Ted Cruz supporters. It would appear he has no facial reactions at all. A bit like Darth Vader then.

Facebook Flat

Facebook is an excellent way to keep in touch with friends and family, but its interface can feel very cluttered at times. You could go with Facebook Purity to clean up the dreck, but I am currently very enamored with Facebook Flat.

As the name of the extension implies, it makes the Facebook site look more flat. It also simplifies the layout and makes it nicer to look at.

By comparison, here is the old, original version:

facebookflat1

And here is the page with Facebook Flat enabled.

facebookflat2

As you can see, it’s neat, functional, and minimalist. Much more calming on the eyes.

Black Menu for Google

Are you a Google fanatic? Despite the privacy implications that come with using Google products, some people remain committed users. If you are one, you will definitely be interested in Black Menu for Google.

The extension, once installed, places a new button in your top toolbar. When you click it, a menu drops down with links to various Google services.

blackmenu1

As you scroll down the list, you can gain access to those services by granting permission to the extension. So you can instantly check your Gmail inbox, your calendar, peek into your Drive, or see if you have any new YouTube subscriptions.

The really nice thing is that the menu is totally customizable. You can remove ones you don’t want, and add other ones using drag and drop.

blackmenu2

FlashTabs

Do you need to memorize anything? Maybe you are trying to learn a foreign language, or perhaps you are studying for a really important exam? If so, then FlashTabs could mean the difference between an A+ and a F.

Once installed, it becomes your default screen every time you open a new tab, with the screen becoming an interactive flashcard. Create your deck of cards with the question and answer.

flashtabs1

Then when you open a new tab, you will get a flashcard to answer. When you think you have the answer, click “Show” to see the answer.

flashtabs2

You will then get three smiley face icons — click the happy one if you got it right, the frowny one if you got it wrong, you get the idea. The only downside to this extension is that it does not choose a card randomly. It always follows the order of the cards, as you entered them into the deck. Randomizing would definitely improve it a great deal.

Emoji Keyboard

I am not a huge fan of emoji, but I know a lot of people who are. For them, it’s the ultimate form of expression. Instead of typing LOL or ROTF, instead they use the emoji version. Me, I’d rather let my words show what mood I am in. Call me old-school.

For emoji fans though, Chrome now provides a way for you to get more emojis than you can shake a stick at. By installing Emoji Keyboard, you will get a button in the top bar. Opening it will reveal lots and lots of emojis.

Now when you are using a text field, such as a Facebook status update, open the emoji box, choose one, and it will be copied to the clipboard. Copy and paste into the text field to see your new sparkling emoji.

chrome_emojis

What is REALLY cool is that the emojis can be adapted to different colors of skin. You choose from six different skin colors.

chrome_emojis2

ColorTab

If you are a web designer of some description, you will know the importance of getting the correct codes for color shades. ColorTab is another extension which takes over your New Tab page, and it gives you a random set of new color shades each time you open a new tab.

colortabs1

Mousing over each shade will reveal the code needed to use that shade in your webpages and other digital graphic designs. Refreshing the New Tab page will reveal another set of shades.

If you click the logo in the top right-hand corner, you will be taken to another set of features.

colortabs2

Hot, Popular, and Random will take you to the color shade palettes in those categories. Clicking New will take you to a plain palette where you can choose different shades from a color wheel to make your own selection.

Trello

trello

Along with Slack, Trello is the power toy for all productivity-obsessed workers everywhere. We have talked about Trello many times before, so there’s no need to go over again what Trello does. But what you may not realize is that Trello has recently brought out their own official Chrome extension.

The extension has two functions. One is the box which you see above. By clicking on the Trello icon, the box will open and from there, you can quickly and effortlessly navigate to any of your boards and cards. You can then create new cards.

The second function though is really great. By typing “t” in the URL bar and then making a space, it instantly activates Trello search, and you can now look for anything in your Trello account.

trello2

TubeBuddy

TubeBuddy touts itself as the “premier YouTube channel management kit“, and is absolutely essential if you run a YouTube channel. TubeBuddy makes the whole video editing process easy, by providing direct links to important areas of the site, as well as providing more tools for video editing.

tubebuddy1

Going to your video editing page, you will now see the TubeBuddy logo next to each of your video. Clicking that will reveal more options for you to improve your videos.

tubebuddy2

There’s so many features that it will take you quite some time to look through them all. A must-have for all YouTube fanatics.

BuzzSumo

If you own a website, you may want to see how well you are doing on social media. Or if you are involved in social media marketing, SEO, or you simply want to judge the popularity of a website, then BuzzSumo is the one to install.

buzzsumo

After installing it, go to the website in question and then click the BuzzSumo icon in the top bar. A box will then open up containing all of the necessary stats.

The one annoying part is that to see Twitter stats, you need to make a free BuzzSumo account. And even then, as you can see from the screenshot above, it takes quite some time for BuzzSumo to come up with the Twitter numbers.

Drive20

drive20

This is a quirky little one. Installing this will enable you to simultaneously open the first 20 files in a Google Drive folder.

What good is this, you’re probably asking. Well, if you are a teacher, pressing this button will open the work of all your students (provided the class is under 20, of course). Or you may have a folder full of photos. Pressing the button will instantly open the first 20 photos in the folder, for easier viewing.

Once you have it installed, I’m sure more uses will come to you.

Open TOP10 Links

opentop10

Reading sites such as Hacker News, Product Hunt, and Reddit is extremely popular. But knowing which ones you have read or n0t read can sometimes be a bit difficult. After all, so many links get submitted to these pages all the time.

Open TOP10 Links will help you out with that conundrum by opening the first 10 non-visited links when you click the button. Then when you come back later, click the button again to get the next non-visited ones.

Which New Chrome Extension Do YOU Recommend?

chromewebstore

So many Chrome extensions are made and submitted to the Chrome Web Store on a regular basis, that it is difficult to keep track of them all. So maybe there is a totally fantastic extension out there that I am totally unaware of? If so, make my day and tell me all about it in the comments below.

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