Five things you never knew you could do with your Chromebook
With everything stored in the cloud, Google’s Chromebooks offer super fast start-up times and are much lighter than most laptops. And with great devices like the Acer C7 being a bargain at just £199, now could be the time to invest in a Chromebook.
Don’t worry if you think they’re less well-equipped than proper laptops, either. Far from it. With a Chromebook, you can do this little lot, for starters.
1 Stream music
Last week Spotify announced it was launching a version of its streaming service using a browser. You can sign up now through the company’s Facebook page. Or you can use Rdio, and bring millions of tracks to your Chromebook using your browser. Hard drive? Who needs a hard drive?
2 Watch movies using Netflix
The original version of Chrome OS wouldn’t stream Netflix, but the movie service will now work like a charm on your Chromebook, giving you a ton of options that’ll more than make up for the lack of DVD drive. Just careful you don’t get popcorn in the keyboard.
3 Make video calls
The bad news is it’s a little tricky getting Skype to work on Chrome OS. Thankfully there’s an app called imo, which’ll let you use Skype as well as Google Talk, ICQ, and more. Of course, you could always start a Google Hangout in Google +, which works seamlessly with Chrome OS. Your contact will need to be on Google +, which admittedly not that many people are, but signing up is a doddle.
4 Turn it into a Windows PC or Mac
You may be feeling a little underpowered with your Chromebook, but did you know you can effectively turn it into a Mac or Windows PC? Just install Chrome Remote Desktop, and you can access another of your computers right on your Chromebook. Add the app to your browser, enable remote connections (both computers will need to be connected to the internet), and you should be able to jump between the two on the same screen.
5 Edit photos and videos online
No hard drive to install programs on might leave you thinking you can’t pull off any photo or video editing. Well you’d be wrong. There are a bunch of programs available online that’ll do the job. Ok, so they might not be able to rival Photoshop and Final Cut Pro for the really polished effects, but for your basic editing they’ll have everything you need. Check out Pixlr Editor, LunaPic, Fotoflexer, and iPiccy for snaps, and the YouTube Video Editor is pretty handy.