The decades old platform wall around Microsoft continues to crumble as the company released a new extension for the Chrome browser and Chrome OS devices on Friday. OneNote Clipper for Chrome does exactly what its name suggests: It clips web content and saves it to a OneNote account.
About two months ago Microsoft first released a bookmarklet to do the same thing. Here’s what it looks like in practice:
So why the new extension? Microsoft explains that it has to do with what browser people were using with the clipper :
After looking at the initial usage data, we saw that a lot of you are using the OneNote Clipper in Chrome. We also heard many of you asking for a Chrome extension for the Clipper.
Now the OneNote Clipper is available as a Chrome extension, adding an easy-to-access OneNote button to your Chrome browser that launches the Clipper.
With Chrome considered one of the most-used browsers (depending on whose stats you use), this is a smart play by Microsoft. It’s also a bit of reversal from the company’s Chromebook attack ads earlier this year because those devices use the Chrome Web Store for apps, which is where you’ll find the free extension.
Make no mistake though; Microsoft isn’t just doing this to patch up its relationship with Google or Chrome users. Instead, this play could get more people interested in or aware of Microsoft’s OneNote product, which has actually been around for a decade; I used it extensively on my first Tablet PC purchased in 2004.
Since then OneNote has changed from a niche product to the cornerstone of Microsoft’s software platform as evidenced by the app’s integration with the pen included with every Surface Pro 3. Its no longer just a free app for Windows computers either; One Note is available as One Note Online, for Apple iOS devices, Android and for Macs too. The new clipping extension simply makes it easier for you capture items when not actually in One Note, but Microsoft isn’t worried. It knows you’ll want to go to the app to get at all the important bits you’ve saved.