Kevin Purdy wrote a very informative article for Fast Company this week explaining how to unlock apps for Google Drive. One of the apps he highlights caught my eye: Pixlr Editor. This is exactly the app I have been looking for to save me time when I am writing blog posts and creating photo galleries for TechRepublic.

Pixlr Editor is a full-featured in browser photo editing app that you can use to edit image files while they still reside in Google Drive. And if you have synched your Drive files across more than one computer, whatever editing you do on one will automatically appear on another system. Now, that’s a productivity increase I can get behind.

Installing apps

Pixlr Editor is available from the Chrome Web Store and it integrates very well with the Chrome Browser, but you are not limited to Chrome. Up-do-date versions of Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera, and Safari will work just fine with the Pixlr Editor. I am using Chrome in my example.

Start Chrome and navigate to Google Drive. Click the gear icon to open the menu and click on the Manage Apps entry (Figure A). The resulting screen (Figure B) is where your apps can be managed after you have installed them, so you’ll probably be seeing it often.

Figure A

Manage your apps

Figure B

Get more apps

The Pixlr Editor is popular so there may be a link right on the front page, but if there isn’t, just type “Pixlr” in the search box and choose the editor app. Click on the “Add to Chrome” button (or the “Install” button in a different browser). (Figure C)

Figure C

Click to install

The app will install into Chrome in a matter of moments (Figure D).

Figure D

Pixlr Editor is installed

To get the full effect of the app, close Chrome and then restart it. Launch the editor and make changes to any image file located in your Google Drive (or anywhere your PC can reach for that matter). You can also right-click a file in your Drive and you’ll see that the Pixlr Editor has been added to your Open With menu. (Figure E and F)

Figure E

Open a New Tab and run Pixlr

Figure F

Ready to edit an image

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