Chromebooks Get More Creative With A New Movie Editor And Enhanced Apps

Chromebooks and devices running Chrome OS have come a long way since the early days of the platform. Although they are still more at home in the education sector, these devices have become more useful for all kinds of computer users, whether they're doing work, having fun, or simply being productive. Unfortunately, Chromebooks still have the stigma of being underpowered laptops running a glorified web browser and many still think they can't be used for serious work outside of documents, spreadsheets, and video chats. In order to remedy that, Google has announced upcoming features and new apps that may help change that misconception, turning Chromebooks into more usable portable workstations for students, office workers, creatives, and everyone in between.

The idea behind Chromebooks and Chrome OS seemed simple enough. Most people these days mostly live in their browsers, especially students and office workers who already use web-based services or can effortlessly switch to web apps. Given how few hardware resources are needed to run these web apps, the earliest Chromebooks were indeed underpowered and therefore cheap, making them more attractive to schools and employers.

Today, however, high-end Chromebooks can give laptops a run for their money in terms of hardware, and Chrome OS now supports running Android apps and Linux software out of the box. They can be used for almost anything you use a laptop for, including gaming thanks to Google Stadia, as long as there are apps available for those activities. Admittedly, the platform may be lacking some apps in that regard, but Google is taking the next step to fill in the gap.

Productive and creative Chromebooks

Starting this fall, Google Photos will feature a new and more advanced built-in video editor, and it will debut first on Chromebooks. Although definitely not on the same level as professional movie makers, the feature will still allow users to mix videos, photos, and music without breaking a sweat. And for those who do need more advanced video editing powers, LumaFusion is coming to Chromebooks (and Android) soon as well.

For less artistic endeavors, Google is teasing upcoming updates to preinstalled apps on Chromebooks that can help make users more productive, no matter their walk in life. The association might be a bit confusing at first, but the Gallery will soon have a more capable PDF viewer that will let users edit the document, fill out forms, make annotations, or even sign contracts without having to install another app. Teachers and presenters will also be able to use the Screencast app to record and share transcribed videos, taking some of the pain out of virtual classes and meetings. There is also the young Cursive app that will let you take handwritten notes, provided your Chromebook supports a stylus, of course.

Google is also reminding users of upcoming features that were announced before. They might sound insignificant, but the ability to choose a dark theme, organize your windows into virtual desktops, and see your schedule at a glance, go a long way in being more productive when using a Chromebook. More importantly, these features further narrow the gap with Windows and Mac, helping Chrome OS finally get the recognition as a serious work OS that it deserves.