For those people who always seem to need to access files or software from their home computer when they’re on the go, there’s a solution. It’s Google’s Chrome Remote Desktop and it’s pretty good at its price point: free.
Chrome Remote Desktop is a remote access software, which is a fancy way of saying it lets you use your computer from home through your browser.
It’s common use at workplaces — often when someone from IT needs to access your computer remotely to troubleshoot issues. But there are many reasons why an individual may want to have remote access to their own computers.
If you travel, have documents that aren’t easily stored on the cloud or want to check on software like (legal!) torrents while you’re out of the house, remote access software can come in very handy.
To use it, a user downloads a simple app, signs in with their (presumably existing) Google account, and sets up a PIN code for their computer. Accessing that computer is as simple as opening a link in the browser or, in the case of mobile devices, installing a native application.
When using Chrome Remote Desktop, users are shown either the full desktop or part of it. Users can control the mouse and keyboard of the computer, allowing them to do most normal functions. It’s a tiny bit laggy, so it’s unlikely anyone would want to use it for extended periods. But in a pinch, it’s very handy.
Now, there are always privacy concerns when you give access to any kind of data to someone like Google. But from my limited use, the combination of being free, extremely easy to set up and reliable makes Google’s Chrome Remote Desktop a great option for most.