Taking a screenshot on a Chromebook is easy.
You simply press “CTRL + SHIFT + Switch Window” and you’re done.
But what if you want to do more than just take a snapshot?
What if you wanted to add comments to the image? Or add annotations? Or what about taking a partial screenshot?
That’s where Awesome Screenshot comes in. It’s my new favorite app and saves a ton of time, so I thought I’d write about it.
Let me tell you how it can benefit you.
Let’s get started.
Last updated: 1/12/21. Updated info for 2021.
Awesome Screenshot is awesome
Awesome Screenshot is an app available on the Chrome Web Store.
It currently has over 1.5M users and is currently rated at 4.5/5 stars with over 17K reviews.
Update: As of 2021, this is one of the leading free screenshot apps that’s fully compatible with Chromebooks. With many people now working remotely, screenshotting pages, notes, pictures, and other things on the screen is a necessity.
(If you need to record your desktop, there’s an app for that.)
It’s a very robust and complete screen capture solution. Not only can you take screenshots, but you can also do a lot more than that.
This isn’t a paid post or anything- I personally use Awesome Screenshot and I found it to be extremely useful, so I’m sharing it with you guys because it’s that good. (Seriously.)
Here’s a brief list of what it can do for you:
- Capture or clip a selected area of your screen
- Take a screenshot on a timer
- Take a screenshot of only a visible portion of your window
- Capture your whole desktop
- Add captions, add symbols, arrows, lines, circles, rectangles, and text
- Upload the image instantly to Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, and any other popular social network
- Upload to Google Drive instantly
- Record your desktop and make a video
- Save your images and videos locally (with one-click uploading)
- Save very large image sizes (no 2MB limit)
- One-click upload to their image directory and get a special link to use
Update: In 2020, this extension is still completely free to use and continually updated. You can now share your screen, videos, and screenshots with friends, coworkers, and teammates. I no longer use this app as much because I’ve gotten quick with with other tools, but this is still a decent extension for someone who wants a quick and free way to grab and share screenshots.
Here’s a video to demonstrate how easy it is to use:
That’s a lot for just a screen capture app. And it’s completely compatible with Chromebooks and Chrome OS.
Awesome Screenshot is also free to use. They used to have a premium plan where you had to pay to unlock the good stuff, but now the premium features are free to use. That’s awesome.
Let’s go over some of the features and how to use them.
Installing the app
First, you’ll have to install Awesome Screenshot from the Chrome Web Store (obviously).
Step 1: Launch the Chrome Browser and install the app here.
Step 2: After you install it, the icon should pop up in the top-right. If you don’t see it, click on the menu and find the icon for it. It should be at the top of the menu and it looks like this:
That’s it. It’s added to Chrome. It’s compatible and works with Chromebooks, Windows, MacOS, and Linux.
Taking a screenshot of a web page
This is probably what you’re here for- learning how to take a screenshot of your desktop on your Chromebook. You can easily take a still with just a few clicks.
Here’s how to take a screenshot:
Step 1: Start up Chrome. Browse to whatever web page you want to capture.
Step 2: Click on the Awesome Screenshot icon and choose what you want to do.
You can also use a hotkey shortcut:
- If you want to capture everything that’s visible on the web page, press “CTRL + SHIFT + V.” (You can also set a delayed capture, where it won’t take a picture until a timer runs out.)
- If you want to take a screenshot of the entire web page, press “CTRL + SHIFT + E.”
- If you want to capture a specific area, press “CTRL + SHIFT + S.” It’ll then give you the ability to crop out a specific part of the page.
Step 3: After you capture, you can then edit the image.
The built-in editor lets you do a ton of different edits to your captures. They’re saved as projects for you to do as you please.
You can create lines, arrows, squares, text, captions, add blur or censor effects to cover personal information, paint over stuff, draw on stuff, and whatever else you want to the still. If you’re fine with the image and you don’t want to alter it, you can just skip this step.
Sure, Chrome’s photo viewer can do basic edits, but this app does a lot more than the native viewer.
You can also add comments to the picture if you decide to post it on their website (we’ll cover this in a bit).
The interface is easy to use and you’ll get the hang out of it quickly. Not much to explain here. It works just like any other basic photo editor you’ve used before. Even if you’ve never used one, you’ll learn it easily. It’s very intuitive.
(If you’re looking to do some more professional photo editing for your pictures, check out these photo editing apps.)
When you’re done, it’s time to go to the next step.
Step 4: Now you can choose how you want to save or upload the image.
You can choose to upload it to their site, which is their home website. The image will be saved there and you’ll be given a special link that goes directly to your capture. The image will only be saved temporarily, so be aware of that.
You’ll be able to add live comments to the image and others will able to as well if it’s saved on their site. Others will be able to comment and view your image. You can also choose who exactly you want to be able to see your comments, so there’s some degree of privacy.
If you choose to save it on their site, you’ll be able to name it and tell your friends about it using a handy list of social networks.
You also choose to save it permanently on diigo.com or upload it to your Google Drive account. This will also give you a special link to use.
And, of course, you can also choose to save it locally to your Chromebook or hard drive as well.
Record your entire desktop as a video
If you want to capture your entire desktop as a video instead of an image still, it’s also very easy.
This is helpful for giving a presentation, giving a tutorial, going over homework, teaching over the Internet, troubleshooting issues, recording a video, or anything else that requires you to record your screen.
This part assumes you’ve already installed the app and you know how to launch it. If not, refer to If you haven’t installed the app yet, do so now.
Here’s how to record your desktop as a video:
Step 1: Start up the Chrome Web Browser. Click on the Awesome Screenshot icon.
Step 2: Click on “capture desktop.”
Step 3: Awesome Screenshot will start recording your screen.
Step 4: When you’re done, just click “stop” and the recording will be saved as a video.
Step 5: Save the video.
That’s it. It’s basic and simple. And it works.
(Need an alternative, dedicated screen recorder app with more options and features? Check out Screencastify.)
This is especially useful for school presentations, business pitches or conferences, and sharing proof or specifics.
Recording the screen isn’t always accessible on Chrome OS, but these extensions make it possible with just a few clicks.
Upload an image to edit
If you have an image saved locally on your Chromebook or hard drive, you can upload it for editing using their tools.
Here’s how to edit a screenshot:
Step 1: Launch the Chrome Browser. Click on the Awesome Screenshot icon.
Step 2: Click on “select a local image” and an image uploader will appear.
Step 3: Choose the image you want to edit, and upload it.
Note: It must be a supported file type for it to work. If not, consider changing the type using an online image converter.
Step 4: Upload the picture from your local hard drive.
If you have your picture saved on an external drive, you can connect it to your Chromebook so you can upload it.
Step 5: You’ll now have access to their photo editing tools so you can add captions, arrows, lines, shapes, or other annotations.
Or you can just upload it to show your friends and allow commenting. This is perfect for quick image touch-ups when you don’t need a whole image editor like Photoshop.
It’s picture perfect
Well, that’s about it.
I just wanted to let you know about this app because I recently discovered it and it was loaded that you could want.
It makes taking screenshots on a Chromebook so easy and also records video. It’s like an all-in-one solution that saves you time.
Before, I’d have to take a capture, save it to my hard disk, launch an image editor, import the image, edit it, then save it again.
Now, I can do everything in one app. It saves tons of time and I can’t thank the developers enough.
If they could offer their one-click upload to those sites, this would be the best screenshot app ever.
But you can’t be too greedy, right?
It’s already an amazing app. And it’s free, let’s not forget.
If you know of any other awesome apps like this, leave them in the comments and I’ll check them out.
Or if this tutorial has helped you, let me know as well =]. And don’t forget to tell a friend.
Thanks for reading.