Google hit mid-week form by announcing that Chromebooks are getting several new features that will get you excited. We’re talking about video editing in Google Photos, light and dark themes, new PDF editing features in Gallery, easier ways to change your Chromebook’s wallpaper, better calendar integration, and even more.
Let’s dive into all of this.
Google Photos gets a video editor
For real! Google Photos is getting a video editor (first on Chromebooks) where you can create movies from video clips and photos. The new editor will try to “smartly” select clips or moments for you, but you can also take full manual control and create something from scratch.
You’ll find themes or blank templates, cropping tools, and controls for things like brightness, contrast, white balance, shadows, and highlights. There are also Real Tone filters, with options for music and title cards to finish it all off. The clips available can be those from the Gallery or Files apps on the device, and a single click should let you switch them to Google Photos.
Google was specific in saying that this new Google Photos video editor was on Chromebooks first (this fall), which could mean we’ll get a phone version later or similar functionality on other computers.
LumaFusion is coming to Chromebooks
Need more video editing than Google Photos offers above? Google says LumaFusion will soon be available on Chromebooks. This is an award-winning professional-grade video editor that lets you edit multi-track videos, add graphics and visual effects, transitions and distortions, audio tracks and effects, narration, color grading and who knows what else.
LumaFusion is currently a $30 iPad app. Once we know more about its launch on Chromebooks, we’ll let you know.
So many other new features
Everything else to come in August:
- Light and dark themes: With new light or dark themes, Chromebooks are coming in 2018, so in the future you can choose either theme at any time or you can toggle the operating system “auto” when your day turns to night. “Some” wallpapers are designed for both themes equally and should also change lightness when you switch themes.
- Google Photos Wallpapers: You can now set wallpapers from Google Photos albums on Chromebooks, with the ability to automatically change daily. You can also set favorite images in new screensaver photo frames.
- Edit PDF in Gallery: In the Chromebook Gallery app, you’ll soon be able to fill out forms, highlight text, add annotations, and sign documents.
- screenshot app: A Screencast application now allows somebody save, view and share transcribed videos and presentations.
- cursive app: If you have a Chromebook with stylus, you’ll be able to capture, edit, and organize handwritten notes, including copying and pasting notes into other apps or sending them as PDFs.
- Calendar integration: When you tap on the Chromebook shelf, a monthly calendar now appears on the side of your screen. If you select a date, you’ll see your events and their details without having to open an app or browser tab.
- Notice: Notifications have bigger buttons (for easier actions) and when they arrive from the same sender, they will now be grouped together.
- Virtual office backup (coming in September): Chromebooks will soon let you record entire desktops, including windows and apps. Reopening is a simple touch, and it will give you the power to close everything at once.
It’s a lot of things, isn’t it? Again, most things are coming in August, aside from the virtual desktop recording (September) and the Google Photos video editor, which will be here in the fall.