Since it's inception, the Google Chrome browser has been just like every other Google product â€“ easy to use, fast and full of features and promise. Its simplicity and speed are two of the qualities which have made up to 10% of the web surfing world choose it as their browser of choice. But what about its Developer edition?
The announcement by Google that it was allowing Developers access to a special area on its website to upload and test Chrome extensions (which is another name for plugins or addons to the browser) came as no suprise to those 'in the know' about technology, but to normal internet users who want to try out this software, there is a certain level of confusion about how to get hold of this product.
So how do you do it? There are two ways. One is untypically 'not very Google' (ie complex and annoying) and one is quite simple. Let's look at the annoyin one first.
When you use software nowadays, it is usually governed by an 'updater' script which ocmmunicates with the software's server and asks it whether there are updates available and if so, where they are. It then downloads them and updates itself. Chrome is no different, but unfortunately there is no way to tell the Google servers that you need to change your software's type.
It is for this reason that you need to download the Google Chrome 'channel chooser'. This bit of software can allow you to change the channel which your Chrome browser is subscribed to, and you can then go ahead and subscribe to the 'developer channel' and have access to the new extension.
There is a small problem here, however. Sometimes it doesn't work. Many people have complained about this over-complex and annoying process, and so now there is a 'workaround'. This may sound drastic to some, but believe me it is safe and it works.
The first step is to actually uninstall the Chrome browser. Don't be scared - in seconds you will have been able to upgrade Google Chrome to the dev edition! When uninstalling, you will see a dialogue box which will ask you whether you want to save your browser settings. Make sure this is checked. Then go ahead and uninstall. After this, you will be a little worried, but don't be â€“ you now need to go to the Google Chrome developer's page on their website (type 'chromium dev channel' into Google to find it) and then download the Dev version directly. Easy.
Once installed, you will have access to a wide range of Chrome extensions, as well as lots of other new features inside the software. Go crazy!