Browsers being just plain browsers are but considerably apps to be abandoned especially if you have no HTML pages to deal with. However, modern browsers of today offer much more things than you could imagine. Take Google Chrome as a leading example, the browser offers not just simply tools for better browsing experience, but also games, apps, themes, and extensions you can surely love to shop along.
Today, we are to deal with the top free extensions of Google Chrome that are aimed at productivity. With productivity, we mean more efficient results within the least amount of time, and of course, with the right set of tools and environment to further facilitate productivity. Among the many extensions out there which help working individuals go further, below are the top 12 on our list:
Made by Transfusion Media, the free extension is among the best-featured browser-dependent app you could encounter in terms to tools for productivity. StayFocusd’s aim is simple: do your job and nothing else. To better put it, the extension works by limiting time-wasting sites or contents (such as going to social media sites) off your attention or grasp, so that you can work better without the tempting clicks, shopping, or browsing. Preconfigured time-wasting sites are only allowed for a specific amount of time, and once you have consumed it, you can never open the site again for the rest of the day.
The extension is also very customizable, and you can restrict specific domains, sites, network maps, or contents directly. There’s also the Nuclear option wherein you can set all other websites blocked and only allow the ‘good’ sites to work. Thinking of cheating the tool? Then take the risk of going through a lot of zigzags to make tempted changes.
2. Note Anywhere
One of the most interesting ways to scribble down notes while surfing is to get a pen and jot that idea down, or you can just simply go to the famous Notepad and type it. However, things can get a lot messier and less organized until you realized that here’s the Note Anywhere to ease the burden.
The extension works by allowing you to pin notes to specific websites on virtually any area of the screen with virtually any number of notes. Notes are page-dependent, hence re-opening the site will show all the notes accustomed to that page also. Notes are customizable, and the changes are saved in real time. Syncing between different computers is not yet a feature, hence as of now, you can only count it reliable only to the computer you have it installed upon.
A Chrome extension that is also widely offered to other platform and other devices, the aim of the Sloth in TLDR is to trim down contents according to what you need. Websites you visit can get loaded with a lot of pictures, links, ads, and other items which you may not need, and most of the time, what you only need is a gist of that site. TLDR offers real-time machine-generated summaries of the websites you visit, and you can choose how you read it whether a short form, medium, long, original, or just the summary itself.
4. Scroll To Top Button
Admit it or not, not all websites do offer a ‘back to top’ button for users to easily go back to the top or main section of the webpage they are visiting. This has been a pain to a lot especially when the site is too long or too loaded with contents making scrolling up and down a lot harder than usual. Thankfully, this Chrome extension comes along, and it offers you not only a button for going back to top, but also an optional button for scrolling to the bottom of the page.
Better than these, the extension is highly customizable from simply the appearance, its position on your screen, and even its own keyboard shortcuts! Changes on settings are saved real time, and upon installation, all you need is to refresh the page you want to be aided by this tool.
5. Session Manager
Session Manager is a tool or extension that will help you manage your collection of tabs in a lot of ways. We always knew bookmarking could help, but unless you are fond of having a ton of bookmarks crowding your browser, you’d sure love to hear what and how Session Manager will help you manage your opened tabs. All you have to do is to simply open all the tabs that you want for a specific session (e.g., news and updates), and save the session for future use.
You can save different collection of tabs, and better than this, the tabs you have collected can be replaced or deleted. There’s also a Save as temp session feature wherein you can save open tabs to be opened a little later, and upon re-opening, the tabs will not be saved anymore. Keyboard shortcuts are also available, but since there’s no sync feature, all the tabs are saved on that specific computer only.
6. Read Later Fast
Especially if you’re always on research, opening too many tabs or saving too many bookmarks for future reference may not be the best of ideas. Read Later Fast saves your research skills by allowing you to save the page for later reading—online or offline. By simply going for the context menu, you are given the option to save the page you are currently on, and archiving it for offline viewing would be very helpful, more if you don’t have a data connection of your own.
Contents saved can also be viewed in a variety of ways, and you can optionally sync your list of sites by making an account in dilgo.com.
7. FastestChrome – Browse Faster
The name says it all; FastestChrome must be one of the all-in-one solution to help you browse or get your results faster and more efficiently without opening multiple tabs. The extension works by you highlighting a word or content, and a bubble pops up. The bubble will show you depending on what search engine you want to utilize, and in a split-second, the definition or search result will be shown in a glimpse.
The extension can also be utilized for getting the best prices for a specific product, or for knowing how popular a particular content is in relation to major social networking sites. Sites with the ‘next’ button will also be automatically loaded to save time. The tool may take a slight learning curve, but once you get used to it, you will surely enjoy how it helps you get your results fast and simple.
8. Google Quick Scroll
Google Quick Scroll is not really about helping you scroll, but it helps by making your search easier with content analysis and detection. Let’s say you are searching for the first president or minister of Qatar in Google, and after clicking a relevant link from the search results, a balloon pop-up will appear on the lower right of the screen. The balloon contains the most proximate results within the page, and by clicking on it, will lead you to that specific paragraph or section. The more results found on that page, the more links or shortcuts you will get from the pop-up balloon.
9. Chrome Currency Converter
Tired of going for an online currency converter to check for the actual price according to your country’s latest exchange rate? Make the job easier with this extension from Chrome. The Chrome Currency Converter works simply by making all legible currencies on the page converted to a base currency you set it to work on. To avoid confusion, the results are optionally highlighted to let you know that the tool has processed the currencies, and within options, you can choose whether you want to round prices, include separators, display origin prices, and other small changes. On top of these, if you want to temporarily disable the changes made by the extension to your page, you can simply click its icon found on the address bar.
I may not totally understand why the name of the extension is InvisibleHand, but I think it works quite well as being ‘invisible’ in its work. Though its name doesn’t say it, InvisibleHand is your Chrome extension for finding the cheapest price for the product, travel suite or package, or hotel that you are currently looking for. It works by giving you a highlighted notification above your page whether there’s a market out there that offers a better price, or whether you are already looking at the best price. Links are also provided along the said dashboard to guide you directly to that page.
InvisibleHand is also great for price comparisons, though per my experience, it may not be always accurate but still superbly helpful. The extension harvests prices from major online shopping sites from different major countries across the globe, and it will give you only the most updated and cheapest prices it could find.
11. Checker Plus for Gmail
Might be one of the most familiar extensions in any browser, the Checker Plus for Gmail is designed specifically for Gmail users who are tired of logging in and out of Gmail just to check for mail. The extension is highly feature-rich, and aside from simply checking mail, you can actually do basic operations like deleting messages or marking them according to your labels as Gmail would feature. You can also integrate the extension as an app to your system, notifying you of incoming mails even if you close your browser. If you are away, you can choose if you want the extension to read the message for you. Last among the features, the extension also works with multiple Gmail accounts, giving you only a small window to accessing all those accounts in one glance.
Also one of the most popular extensions in Chrome, LastPass is a password manager that is based on your browser. It helps you fill in username, e-mail, password, and even other form fields without going to the same input fields over and over again. LastPass features a more intelligent way of detecting your input on specific fields, and will offer you automatic input just in case you needed it. You can create your profiles based on your personal information, credit card information, bank accounts, and even other custom fields, while you enjoy it offering you a highly complex password generation feature as well. Lastly, LastPass also offers import and export features to major password managers such as Roboform and KeePass.