One of the questions that I get asked more often than just about any is, “How can I record a podcast using my Chromebook?” There are many limitations to Chromebooks when it comes to recording audio and video. This is mostly due to the fact that there is no hard drive to store and convert the large media files. Where there are a few great applications for recording audio as referenced here in a recent post from Richard Byrne and Free Tech for Teachers, I wanted to showcase how two of these can be used to create not just audio recordings, but actual podcasts that can be subscribed to by your school community.
Seven Chromebooks are now receiving an update that will install Android 7.1.1 Nougat. However, only three of these computers will receive the update on the stable channel. These devices are the Lenovo Chromebook Flex 11, the Samsung Chromebook Pro, and the Acer Chromebook R 13. As the software upgrade is released through the stable channel, practically all units of the three devices will now have access to the Google Play Store and to other features incorporated in the operating system. Four other devices, on the other hand, will obtain the software upgrade through the beta channel, including the Google Chromebook Pixel (2015), the Acer Chromebook 14, the Dell Chromebook 13, and the Samsung Chromebook Plus. People whose computers are on the beta channel may now install the software package, but it is important to point out that there may still be a few bugs and other software flaws that may affect the user experience.
Once the update gets installed on the Chromebook, a user will be able to experience the feature that Android 7.1.1 Nougat brings to the table. Among them is the Resizable Windows feature, which allows the individual to change the size of Android apps running on the desktop. This is similar to how browsers are resized in ChromeOS. In addition, the update should bring support for several important APIs and access to the Google Play Store.
Google’s plan to bring Android apps and the Google Play Store has remained largely unfulfilled to date. But this summer, suddenly, Android support on Chromebook has accelerated. And it’s possible that Google has finally gotten on top of the problems that have plagued this integration.
It started off so promising.
Google announced in May 2016 that it would bring Android apps and the Google Play Store to Chromebook. At the time, it said that the integration would occur in 2016, but by the time that year ended, only a tiny number of Chromebooks could access Android apps, and then only in a very early preview. A year later, I questioned whether Google could even pull off this feat, and I openly wondered about the technical issues it must have run into.
Chromebooks have typically fared pretty well in the battery department, thanks to running a much less resource-intensive operating system than Windows- or Mac-based computers. Nonetheless, there are always a few tweaks you can employ to keep chugging through the end of the day. We’ll show you where to dig into Chrome’s settings and use workarounds if you’re in desperate straits—or if you just want to optimize your Chromebook’s battery life.
Let’s start with the simple stuff—settings that are pretty standard for saving battery life on any computer, though this may be the first time you’re learning where they’re at on a Chromebook.
Google has some big announcements planned for autumn.
Google intends to launch its second generation of Pixel smartphones on October 5 – almost exactly one year after the company introduced the original lineup last year, according to VentureBeat’s Evan Blass.
The next-gen Pixels are expected to have 4GB of RAM and utilize Snapdragon 836 processors. The standard Pixel will feature a 5-inch, 1080p display, while the XL will boast a 6-inch, 1440p panel.
Chromebooks were the computers of choice in 58% of the k-12 schools last year. It appears that the number will increase and it is predicted that Chromebooks will account for 70% of them in just the next few years. It is my opinion that if school kids, especially at the elementary school level, can easily use these computers, then senior citizens should be able to do so. Those seniors who want to use the technology, but who feel overwhelmed with Windows, Macs, or iPads can feel comfortable quickly. I feel so strongly that seniors can do this, I bought one myself and have started a website, Chromebooks for Seniors http://cb4s.net to help any parent or grandparent get started and to learn how best to use the technology.
Many of you reading this either didn’t have the technology when you were growing up or took classes on how to use computers & software. Today that has changed. Computers are not taught as classes. They are “tools” for learning. While there is some introductory computer time, it quickly becomes just part of the day. We had protractors, slide rules, etc., to deal with. Today’s youth know about computers before getting to their first day of kindergarten.
The rollout of Chromebooks has begun in school system around the US, Canada, and the rest of the world. With the cost substantially lower than other computers and tablets, with Google & others providing tools for schools and teachers to easily adapt Chromebooks and control what is used, connect teachers to students and teachers to parents, it is no wonder that so many students are being provided their own computers.
I contend that the Chromebook is “The Remedy for the Aches & Pains of Computing” for seniors. No longer do you have to worry about viruses, malware, ransomware, backing-up data, and updating. The Chrome Operating System takes care of that for you. The computer boots in less than 15 seconds and the battery life is normally 10 hours or more before recharging. Be sure to go to Chromebooks 4 Seniors for much more information and help.
Chromebooks make great laptops for your less tech-savvy family members and friends. Other than logging in with your Google account, there’s practically no configuration involved. However, there still may be a scenario where your grandma or cousin or nephew has a question about something they see on their Chromebook. In these cases, a little remote desktop assistance can go a long way.
For typical Windows, macOS, or Linux computers, we’d generally recommend Windows Remote Desktop, a VNC client or something like Join.me. But with a Chromebook, you are limited to what you can install through the Chrome Web Store. This is where the Chrome Remote Desktop app comes in.
Gmail has come a long way. It’s not perfect and occasionally prompts ripples of outrage across its user base. But let’s be honest: with Gmail, you get plenty for nothing.
As a web app, Gmail is a constant work in progress, but the amount of under-the-hood power is pretty staggering. That’s what we’re here to delve into all the tools below the surface of the Gmail inbox.
In addition to the ability to pinch zoom via the trackpad, this feature should also be filed under ‘why wasn’t this already a thing?’ It is the ability to rename USB and SD drives attached to your Chromebook.
With a simple right click or CTRL+E, you can rename a whole volume attached to your Chromebook. Again, this is a simple thing that you’d figure was doable before now, but it hasn’t been.
He’s watched seniors forge new communities, start blogs, find work, create social change, access books and news that they couldn’t otherwise see due to vision challenges, manage medical and financial information, connect with friends and family and discover outlets that allow them to share their valuable thoughts and experiences with other generations.