I’ve been a very satisfied Chrome browser user for many months now. Back when I first made the switch to Chrome, I was a bit skeptical about the browser’s value and whether or not it would end up being a good fit for me. Much to my surprise, it more than met my expectations. I think a big part of this success I’ve experienced has been the fact that Chrome add-ons are just as good or in some cases, better than those found on Firefox. While there are still some I’d love to see make it over to Chrome, for the most part all of my bases are covered.

With this in mind, I’d like to share some of my top Chrome add-ons produced by the company that made it all possible. Google.

Google Reader extension – Speaking strictly as a news guy, this is invaluable to me as it means I can keep in tune with my OPML bundled (grouping of RSS feeds) with greater ease than I would be using a localized application. Google Reader add-on is a must have. The biggest thing for me is being able to glance over next to my address bar to read story headlines. This wins it for me.

Send it from Gmail – I think the name of the extension says it all, this Gmail add-on allows me to define Gmail as my default mail client. It even goes so far as to provide me with super quick access to your Gmail account. Easily among the best email add-ons available for this browser in my opinion.

Top Chrome Extensions By Google

Personal Blocklist – While something I try to do sparingly, Google’s Personal Blocklist add-on is helpful when looking to avoid content you’re simply not into. Block the search result or domain once, problem solved in the future. I also like that the block list itself can be exported easily.

Why bother with Google designed add-ons?

Any potential for privacy concerns aside, the track record for Google made add-ons designed specifically for Google’s browser is pretty solid. Third party alternatives may not have a clear privacy policy and truth be told, handing over your login info to access various services is just silly. Yes, Google’s privacy report is rather dismal. But at least we already know its weaknesses. With alternative add-ons, not so much.