Knew Tab is a Minimalist, Insanely Useful New Tab Page for Chrome

Chrome's default new tab page is adequate for most, but power users occasionally want to get something more when they open a new tab. Some just want to pretty it up a bit. Up to now, Currently seemed to be the best combination of utility and beauty. Knew Tab takes it to another level of usefulness.

There are many apps to open a page of your choosing in Chrome. The problem with most of those extensions is that the omnibox loses focus when you open a new tab, meaning you must click or use ctrl + L to make use of the omnibox, from which, of course, you can perform a Google search or go directly to a web page.

Using a dedicated Chrome app as a new tab replacement means that your cursor is immediately placed in the omnibox when you open a new tab.

Many of these new tab replacements can be found in the Chrome Web Store, but most are either not very useful, entirely too bloated, or simply ugly.

Knew Tab offers a beautiful minimalist interface while still presenting plenty of information: a clock, Gmail notifier, Facebook notifications, word of the day, top news headline, weather, and a photo of the day. There's even a persistent notepad that acts as a quick way to jot something down without opening a separate app. Each notification acts as a link to an appropriate service: clicking the Facebook icon takes you to Facebook.com, the mail icon links to Gmail, the weather to Wunderground, and so on.

There's also links to the default new tab page, in case you need to access bookmarks, tabs synced with other Chrome devices, or your installed apps.

The options page allows you to turn off any of the mentioned features, so you only use what you need, and to switch between a light and dark theme or change the time between transitions from one item to another.

One of the major benefits (for me, at least) is the Facebook notifications. I've disabled all other notification methods for Facebook: it's not on my phone, and I've revoked Facebook access from any other third-party apps like Tweetdeck. As a result, the only way I can be notified of any Facebook activity is by logging into the site itself. Seeing my notifications every time I open a new tab means I never actually have to visit facebook.com.

Check out the gallery to see Knew Tab in action.

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