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Which Apps Do You Have Pinned in Chrome OS?


Take a quick perusal of our Google+ Community and you’ll come across lots and lots of Chrome OS screenshots, typically from people showing off their desktop wallpaper.

Being a nosey so-and-so — something content for this site hinges on this, after all — I often look at these awesome desktop snaps to get an unscientific glance at what apps are proving popular or most frequently used, and maybe discover a few new ones to write about.

It might even be something you do yourself. I’ve often been sent comments similar to these after posting a few of my own screenshots:

“What’s the app with the red icon? What about the one with the blue dot in the middle that’s left of Gmail, and 2 spaces right of Spotify? How’d you get Feedbin on your panel?” 

This got me thinking. Rather than coyly hunt for screenshots, why don’t I make it a bit of a ‘thing’? And so…

What’s On Your App Shelf?

This is the question I’m asking the Chrome OS users amongst you. Which apps, be they packaged or hosted, do you keep festooned across your app shelf? Are they your favourites or simply the ones you use the most?

To kick things off here’s the desktop shelf of my Chromebook. The apps I keep pinned are not necessarily my favourite apps, but they are my most used. In keeping them pinned they ‘sync’ to my other Chrome OS device, helping ensure I always have the same apps, in the same spot, almost literally to hand.


From left to right.

  • Files Manager
  • Google Chrome
  • Web Store (shortcut)
  • Gmail  (shortcut)
  • Spotify (shortcut)
  • Pixsta
  • Wunderlist
  • Evernote Web
  • Feedbin (Custom URL App)
  • Polarr
  • Facebook Touch (Custom URL App)
  • Google Music (Chrome App)
  • Hangouts (Chrome App)

What about you?

So, over to you: which apps do you have pinned to your Chrome OS app shelf and why? Let us know in the comments below, on Facebook or in our Google+ Community — and don’t forget to share a screenshot, too!

  • lermdoodles

    MS Word Online
    GIMP on Rollapp
    Canvas Rider
    File Manager
    Calendar Clock

  • Well I’m not sure if pinned shelf items sync on metro mode (only doing this because my Chromebook isn’t handy) but all I have as of now in metro mode is:

    Chrome Remote Desktop
    Pixlr Editor

  • Andrew Emerson

    file manager
    jstorrent (must have for chromebook users)
    google calander
    google play
    google maps
    pixl editor
    chrome store

    • Andrew Emerson

      Forgot to mention a very useful extension: forecastfox. No need for any other weather app or extension this one pawns them all.

  • Chrome
    Gmail (shortcut)
    Sunrise Calendar
    Chrome Remote Desktop
    Plex (Shortcut)
    G+ (Shortcut)
    File Manager

  • Chrome
    G+ Photos
    Pocket Casts (shortcut)
    Skype (android port)
    Hangouts app

  • Kenny Strawn

    * The Web Store
    * Files
    * Twitter (custom Web shortcut)
    * Maps
    * Play Movies and TV (packaged app)
    * Drive
    * the Dev Editor
    * Google+
    * Google Play Music Mini Player
    * Wake Up!
    * YouVersion (ARC app)
    * iHeartRadio (ARC app)
    * Instagram (ARC app)
    * Chrome App Developer Tool (ARC app)
    * Snapchat (ARC app)
    * Twitter (ARC app)
    * WUnderground Full Screen Weather
    * Hangouts (packaged app)

    Pretty exhaustive list, unfortunately…

  • Rickey Shortt

    Google Calendar
    Evernote (Android app currently as I experiment with it, but may uninstall and revert back to webapp
    VNC Client (because I have been unsuccessful remoting into Linux with Chrome Remote Desktop)
    Chrome Remote Desktop (for remoting into my Windows 7 machine)
    Calendar Clock (mainly for the quick and simple calendar popup)
    ES File Explorer (Android app I’m experimenting with, unsuccessfully so far, to create and open encrypted zip files)

  • Allen

    Is there some flag I can enable/disable to have my “Add shortcut to this website…” bookmarks save with the website’s favicon instead of with the one letter and color?

    • Guest


      • Allen

        I have that flag enabled. But I’d like the apps to save with the website’s favicon instead of with a letter and one color. Take a look:
        I’d like the websites to save like the 2nd image

  • Frederic MANSON

    Chrome, Files, sFTP, JSTorrent, Subtitle Videoplayer, Quick Note.
    I only put the most used apps.

  • JPB

    Chrome, Gmail, Sunrise, Drive, Files, YouTube, Google Music, Chrome Remote Desktop, RealVNC, Chrome RDP, Chrome Development Environment, Hangouts

  • Underdog

    Chrome, History Eraser, Files, Google Docs, Google Slides, Google Calendar, Zero PC, Web Store.
    My Desktop Screensaver is a Google Data Center pic with countless racks of servers. I use FoxTab extension for my app interface.

  • Chrome Dev Editor, Caret, calculator, Gmail, Files, and a few other apps for Dev stuff that I wrote myself.

  • Aaron Porter

    Files app, Chrome browser, Sunrise calendar, Spotify web player, Google docs, Pixlr touch up, and Google+ photos

  • Christopher Woodhouse

    Chrome, Chrome Store, Calculator, Clock Calendar, Google Drive, Google Calendar, Google Docs, Extensions, Files, Facebook, Google Keep, Gmail, Google+, Hangouts, Google Play Music, Google+ Photos, Hangouts Call, Netflix, Timedoser, Youtube. Yeah, lots of Google stuff…

  • moe

    I feel that like they should change the whole idea of pinning apps, soon there will be a lot of good apps
    (android apps) that people will want to use fast and a new look would be more realistic for a desktop. A new look is about due, rather then a whole row of apps, and if its filled then what a new bottom row of apps ?

    • Noah LaRoy

      I agree except I think they should allow you to put folders and app icons all over the desktop kind of like windows/mac. Also an Expose-like feature from Mac could prove nice for a touchscreen Chromebook as an app drawer?

      • Frederic MANSON


  • Noah LaRoy

    Chrome, CloudMagic, Youtube, Google Docs, The Verge, Chrome Dev Editor, Polymer Designer

  • The typical apps but these stand out: Writer, Secure Shell, & Chrome Remote Desktop. Am checking out Codenvy

  • Roland

    Chrome Remote Desktop
    Google Calendar
    Google Chrome
    Google Cloud Print (Web Link)
    Google Drive
    Google Keep
    Google + Photo
    Google Play Music
    iMore (Web Link)
    Offline Dictionary
    OMG Chrome

  • Left to right from App-Launcher:
    Hangouts (new)

  • anthony

    First Chromebook: Chrome only…. keep it simple
    Second Chromebook: Files, Hangouts, Chrome

  • Bryce Thorup

    Chrome, File Manager, Google Drive, Gmail, Gmail Offline, Google Hangouts, Google Keep, Google Calendar, Chrome Remote Desktop, Chrome Dev Editor, Chrome Apps and Extensions Developer Tool, Google+, Youtube, Google+ Photos, Google Play Music.

  • Mr Prost

    Left to right from App-Launcher:
    Sunrise Calendar
    Mic note (Audio Recorder & Notepad)
    Google books
    Google Drive
    Google Keep
    Google+ Pictures

  • steven mcsloy

    from left to right chrome files symbaloo jstorrent chrome web store twerk airdroid hangouts skype_twerk omg chrome_twerk accurweather_twerk clock calender system

  • Curtis Mitchell

    Drive, Files, G+, and Netflix. I used to have Crosh Shell but I’ve disabled Dev Mode on my devices as I haven’t really used command line stuff in awhile. If some of my media apps improve, I might start pinning them but for now it is easier to navigate to my files in and launch from there

  • Taylor

    Chrome, Gmail, YouTube, Files, Spotify and Netflix. I like to keep it simple and tidy.

  • mike_in_nc

    Files, Chrome, Chrome Remote Desktop, VNC, Google Calendar, Google Keep, Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Photos, Pixlr Editor, Zendesk, Insightly, Calc, Caret, Facebook Messenger, Evernote, Secure Shell, Spotify, Hangouts (desktop)

  • Neil

    Chrome, Google+, G+ Photos, Google Music, Hangouts, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Presentations, GMail, Files, and Chrome App Store

  • Борис Мкртычян

    Chrome, Gmail, Google News, TweetDeck, Flipboard (ARC app), OneDrive, Play Books, Solitaire, Google Translate, VK, Pengi Paint, Calendar Clock, Gismeteo, CrCast, GeekTimes, My Beeline, OMG! Chrome!,, Wikipedia, Until AM

    • Raf

      How do you pin urls?

      • Борис Мкртычян

        1 Turn on the flag # enable-streamlined-hosted-apps and # enable-prominent-url-app-flow

        2 Restart Chrome

        3 Go to any website

        4 Go to the “sandwich” menu and click on the “Advanced Tools”

        5 Click on the “Create an application for this site”

        6 Select the name and icon

        7 Go to the App launcher and get the application.

        Apologies for the broken English (to blame Google Translate)

  • calden74

    Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, OneDrive Hotmail, Gmail, Pixrl, AudioTool, FlipBoard, Pinterest, Feedly, Hangouts, Spotify, Cloud 9, CodeEnvy, YouTube

  • Laverne Clark

    Chrome, Gmail, Gmail Offline, Google Search, You Tube, Google Drive, MS One Drive, Google Keep, Google Play Music.
    Gmail Offline because I commute to places with no wifi. Google Drive to keep documents in sync when I go on vacation outside the country. One Drive for those weak moments when I gotta have a MS Word file. Google Keep to keep the quick shopping list notes I write on my phone in sync with everything else. Google Play Music because I have a regular subscription and keep hopping from device to device during the day or when I apartment-sit for friends that have stereo systems that are too complex for me to figure out.

  • Ha, I have very few – quite boring actually (Chrome, Files, Keep, Caret-T, VNC, Awesome Screenshot).
    I find too many gets too ‘cluttery’ and these are in order of most used.

    Another interesting question JOEY-ELIJAH SNEDDON, would be what Extensions do you have loaded and use.

    • I understand the clutter thing. I refuse to pin anything past the visual ‘half way’ point. It just looks… untidy.

      As for extensions:

      In toolbar, from L – R:

      OMG! Ubuntu! Notifier
      OMG! Chrome! Notifier
      Gmail Checker (by Google)

      Installed, but that don’t show:

      Google Cast Beta
      “Office Editing for Docs, Sheets & Slides”

  • paubayardo

    Chrome, Gmail Offline, Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, Calendar, Hangouts, Telegram, Keep and Download.
    Saludos desde Bogotá :)