Let me say officially: the Google Calendar website is good.
Well really is the most appropriate word here. Google’s default desktop calendar interface is fully functional and gets the job done.
It’s pretty good, actually – until you experience a real exceptional Chrome OS calendar alternative and realize how much more effective, efficient, and generally enjoyable your Chromebook-based calendar juggling could be.
I keep talking about my favorite Google login desktop calendar app of the moment, the Recently Acquired Cronand let me tell you: Phenomenal doesn’t even begin to describe it.
Cron, however, is currently only available for Windows and Mac systems – which leaves those of us on the Chrome OS side of the river dry. (I move between a Windows system and a few Chromebooks, so I have my feet in my two murky and oddly steamy virtual bodies of water.)
But brace yourself, my dank Chromebook friends: I’ve found a decent and equally outstanding standalone calendar app that works great in the Chrome OS environment. And if you’ve been paying attention here for a long time, it’s an app that might look surprisingly familiar.
Your new Chromebook calendar companion
I won’t keep you waiting: The app we’re talking about is an Android-centric calendar tool called Business Calendar 2. It integrates directly with Google Calendar, so all you have to do is install it and grant it calendar-only permission, and you’ll be up and running in seconds.
Business Calendar 2 is the app I actively recommend in my Best Android Calendar Apps Collection as the all-around best choice for a complete and user-friendly calendar upgrade on Android. And since a recent update, its experience on the Chromebook front is just as delightful.
Specifically, the app developer has introduced big-screen enhancements that allow the app to intelligently adapt its interface to any display size and look especially sleek in a form of the size of a desktop computer. With a bunch of new built-in keyboard shortcuts, it makes for a next-level calendar experience that feels tailor-made for desktop use.
But all the size-specific interface niceties aside, Business Calendar shines because of the many useful extras it adds to your calendar management equation.
For example, when looking at your month view and want to zoom in on a specific range of days, you can simply click or tap and drag over the days you want – and Business Calendar will instantly create a custom image on the fly. – zoomed view for you.
The app is packed with other similar efficiency-enhancing gestures, all of which work just as well with your finger as they do with a mouse. Some notable examples:
- In this multi-day view as well as the standard week view, you can drag a nifty little slider to zoom in or out and see more or less information on the screen without having to scroll. (Look down from the previous screenshot and you’ll see what I’m talking about!)
- Also in this weekly view, you can extend the duration of any event by clicking or tapping it once, then dragging it up or down.
- In the agenda view, you can right-click to select multiple events, then move, delete, or edit them all together at once – such an improvement over the multiple steps needed to do something similar on the standard Google Calendar website.
- And – perhaps my favorite feature of all – in the standard event creation screen, you can fill in any number of fields and then save that specific configuration as a template for future use. You can either make it available as quick autofill or even as default information that is filled all new event as a starting point.
And understand this: even if you don’t take the time to set up templates, Business Calendar will offer autofill suggestions based on your past calendar activity every time you create a new event – the suggestions are even synced across multiple devices (both Android and Chrome OS) where you’ve installed the app.
Speaking of the event creation interface, the way Business Calendar puts your current calendar right next to the new event form and lets you see and even interact with your existing calendar while adding something new is an almost painfully logical touch – don’t you think?
Business Calendar has tons of other time-saving extras, including the ability to create presets groups different individual calendars, then be able to show and hide them with a single click or tap on the app bookmarks bar at the bottom of the screen (or on the right side, if your Chromebook has space for it). smaller display) — not to mention the ability to create a custom floating action button that gives you quick access to all the calendar-related functions you use most often.
Its notifications are also richer and more productive than those you’ll get on the Google Calendar website – with built-in options to snooze alerts any time your hazy desires – and you can customize virtually every facet of the look. of the app on your Chromebook, ranging from theme and colors to font size and the presence or absence of almost every individual element imaginable.
I tell you that. Thing. East. Fantastic. And now it’s just as good on a Chromebook as it is on an Android phone.
Business Calendar 2 is free in its basic form with an optional $7 upgrade that eliminates ads and unlocks some advanced features (including the aforementioned template system). And if you pay once for this upgrade, it will apply to both your Chromebook and on all Android devices on which the application is installed.
If you spend as much time looking at your planner as I do, that’ll be seven bucks well spent. But even if you stick with the free setup of the app, you will be blown away by the quality of the upgrade it brings into your life.
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