Chromebooks are fantastic (and often inexpensive) alternatives to Windows and Mac PCs. However, they come with some trade-offs, one of which is software availability. Because Chromebook computers weren’t designed for hard work, you can have trouble running sophisticated software like Photoshop on them.
However, Chromebooks have become more capable in recent years, and while you still can’t run Photoshop on one of them, there are various workarounds for editing on Chrome OS. This is especially true now that Chromebooks can run Android and Linux apps.
1. Download Photoshop for your Chromebook from the Google Play Store.
Chromebooks now have access to millions of apps previously only available on smartphones and tablets, thanks to Chrome OS Android app integration via the Google Play Store. As a result, Chromebooks have access to all Adobe Photoshop apps on the Google Play Store.
How to download Photoshop apps via Google Play:
- Go the Google Play Store and look for it.
- Search for “Photoshop” in the Search for applications & games box.
- Photoshop Express, Photoshop Mix, and Photoshop Fix should all be included in the final product. There’s also the Lightroom app, which may be a better fit for a Chromebook’s mobile-centric computing needs.
- Choose the apps you wish to use and download them.
We recognize that none of these (or their combination) is exact substitutes for the complete desktop Photoshop software, but they’re as near as you can get without a lot of fiddling. Adobe has published a semi-full version of Photoshop for the iPad, but nothing has been verified about an Android version. Given how popular Android tablets are, we wouldn’t hold our breath for an official Photoshop software on Android tablets or Chromebooks.
2. Stream your Chromebook
If you don’t like Android apps, you can also run Photoshop on a computer and stream it to your Chromebook. Before you start, you make sure the laptop has Photoshop and Google Chrome on it, and then you can begin. Also, make sure your PC and Chromebook have a stable internet connection.
On a Chromebook, here’s how to stream Photoshop:
- Visit the Chrome Remote Desktop website from your PC’s Chrome browser.
- Select Turn on from the Set up remote access option.
- On your computer, install the Chrome Remote Desktop add-on.
- Please return to your PC’s Chrome Remote Desktop website and give it a name.
- Next, enter a PIN of at least six numbers and click Next.
- Enter the PIN you created on your computer if asked.
- Return to your Chromebook and download the Android version of the Chrome Remote Desktop app.
- Log in to the Chrome Remote Desktop app.
- You may now access your PC from your Chromebook and utilize Photoshop.
- If your Chromebook doesn’t support Android apps, you can access your PC remotely using the Chrome Remote Desktop website.
This isn’t the best way to use Photoshop on a Chromebook, but it’ll do for now. To ensure security, all Chrome Remote Desktop sessions are encrypted. Keep in mind that instead of going through all of these hoops, you might find it easier to utilize Photoshop on the PC you’re broadcasting from.
You might also utilize Shadow, a PC cloud service. This business provides a Windows PC that may be accessed remotely from any compatible device. Windows, macOS, Ubuntu, Android, and iOS are all supported operating systems. Although Chrome OS isn’t on the list, keep in mind that Chromebooks can run Android apps! You may then install Photoshop on your remote Windows machine and stream it after everything is set up. Keep in mind that Shadow isn’t exactly inexpensive! It costs $29.99 per month right now.
3. Use Lightroom’s web version.
Why not try the web version of Photoshop Lightroom if you don’t like Android apps or don’t want to stream Photoshop?
Photoshop isn’t complete, but it’s a good start. Lightroom lets you cut, rotate, straighten, organize, categorize, rate, process raw files, make panoramas, fix spots, etc. You can’t combine photographs, manage layers, isolate objects, or delete elements, but many don’t want that level of intricacy in your image editing. Many professionals don’t need Photoshop. They can use Lightroom instead.
How to use Photoshop Lightroom on the web:
- Go to the website for Photoshop Lightroom.
- Go to your Adobe account and log in.
If you wish to use the web edition of Lightroom, make sure you’re connected to the internet. This service is also not accessible. To use Lightroom on the web, you’ll need an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription, starting at $9.99.
4. Look for other apps.
The lack of a simple Photoshop program for Chromebooks is regrettable, but there are some excellent options to consider. Pixlr Editor, a free web software with many Photoshop capabilities, is one of our favorites. If you don’t want to leave Photoshop entirely, you can load.psd files. Fotor and Snapseed are two other options. Remember that there are some Linux options as well, such as GIMP. To discover more about them, go to the website below.
If you’ve concluded that a Chromebook is the appropriate tool for all of your Photoshop needs, check out our list of the top Chromebooks. We also offer a unique guide for using a Chromebook to edit photographs and movies. Alternatively, you may save yourself some time and money by purchasing one of the best laptops and enjoying the real Photoshop.