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Five Great Offline Apps for Google Chrome


Working offline in either Google Chrome browser or Chrome OS is not only possible, but relatively simple to do thanks in large part to Google's thriving community of developers.

Contrary to popular belief, you can get a lot done while you're traveling, or simply experiencing connectivity issues at home.

With the advent and growing popularity of Web-heavy operating systems like Google's Chrome OS, innovative developers have been hard at work creating browser-based applications that can offer a level of functionality, even when an active Internet connection isn't available.

Many of these options aren't just limited to Chrome. Mozilla's Firefox, Safari by Apple, Opera, and many other freely available browsers offer easy access to third-party extensions and plugins that can extend your browser's capabilities beyond simply serving up websites.

In this article, we will take a look at five apps for Google Chrome that can be used offline to get things done, even when you're offline.

Minimalist Markdown Editor

I'll start the list with the Chrome extension I'm using to write this very post. The Minimalist Markdown Editor doesn't mix words with its name. This is about as minimalist a Markdown editor as you can find.

There is no apparent save function, or syntax highlighting. You won't find any inherent way to open existing markdown files, either.

You do get a number of features that make writing and checking your work a little easier, including:

  • Running Word Count
  • Split-screen Preview Option
  • One-click HTML Conversion
  • Quick Reference for Markdown Commands
  • Full-screen Options
  • Minimalist, No-distraction Style
  • Auto-scroll

As far as Markdown editors go, it's not a game changer by any means, but if you have a deadline approaching and you want to get a quick-and-dirty Markdown document out the door, this is an excellent app to have in your inventory. Just remember to save your creation elsewhere before you close the window.

There is a GitHub project for this extension, allowing you to check out the source code.


Writebox is another distraction-free word editor app for Chrome that works offline.

Its features include:

  • Offline Capabilities
  • Automatic Save with Every Typed Character
  • Non-Distraction Environment
  • Load from Dropbox/Google Drive
  • Sync to Dropbox/Google Drive

Writebox has built-in support for Markdown, and a clickable preview option that enables you to switch back and forth between the raw text and a preview of what you're working with. Like the Minimalist Markdown editor, there is no syntax highlighting, but you do get the ability to save and load your projects locally.

Google Drive

The Google Drive app for Chrome is Google's official answer to traditional office suites that have, until very recently, been almost entirely offline utilities.

When Google launched the Chrome OS several years ago, the biggest area of pushback from critics surrounded the user's ability to do anything offline. Google Docs (which later became Google Drive) was very dependant on users being online in order to operate.

By making the application available offline, users of the service were able to view, create, edit, and even save changes to existing documents. Of course you wouldn't be able to sync your changes with the copies that exist in the cloud until you were connected to the Web again.


Pocket is a virtual container that allows you to save articles, videos, and other interesting links you want to check out later. It acts a lot like a marriage between a personal news reader and Pinterest.

One of the coolest features about Pocket is that a lot of the information you store is almost instantly accessible offline, on any device. You can shove a few interesting articles into it at work and read them on your tablet during the bus ride home, even if you don't have an active connection during the trip.

Task Timer

Task Timer is a great time management solution that enables you to quickly and easily track time for multiple tasks from your browser. Because data is only stored locally, it can be used whether you are online or offline.

Whether you are a freelance contractor or a remote employee, being able to account for your time is an important part of doing business. This app makes it possible to not only do this from our browser, but to export your tracked time in a CSV file, and customize the experience to meet your individual needs.


Wunderlist is an excellent tool for assembling to-do lists, reminders, and more. Where Task Timer can help you track time, Wunderlist can help you track what needs to be done. It even handles recurring and subtasks, which makes it an excellent tool for busy multi taskers that have a lot to get done throughout the day.

Wunderlist is free to use, but does have a pro version available at either $4.99/month or $49.99/year that enables for collaborative task handling, unlimited subtasks, and attached files.

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