Google is known for many things, including Gmail and Android and, most of all, search. The company’s flagship site is known for something of its own — stark and very plain design. The simple logo and box on a blank white background has become well know to web surfers the world over. The minimalism is appreciated by many, but not all.
Some users prefer a bit more flare and design, more of a Bing-like approach. Fortunately, while Google fails to provide that, third-party developers have found ways of skirting Google’s rule and giving those users what they want.
One such method for getting around Google’s lack of fashion sense is with a Chrome extension that can do it for you. Custom Google Background is one that can get the job done admirably.
Once you have it installed then you can head to the Chrome Tools menu, click Extensions and then browse down and tap on Options to get started. You will immediately note that some of the features are listed as Premium, and those we won’t be using in this, but if you choose the make the upgrade, it will set you back just over $1. However, we’re keeping this free for now.
There are several limitations, but only one that is of real note, which is the inability to upload one of your own images from your computer. Other options blocked in the free version include the ability to hide several features on the Google page, such as the Search button and the I’m Feeling Lucky button.
By default, the extension places a rather nice image of the night sky on the Google page.
You can choose to change this by either adding a URL from an image on the web (meaning you can technically get your own image here — you just need to upload it to someplace like Flickr) or you can search 500px for a background.
Options for hiding the footer, Google+ and Doodle icons are also available at your disposal.
This extension certainly isn’t for everyone, as I said, some people like Google’s minimalist approach. But if you wish to have Google’s search capability with Bing’s use of background imagery, then this provides a great option for your Chrome web browser.