augusta free press news

How to change time in Google Chrome browser

business man computer
(© daviles –

There are specific reasons why a user would want to change the time zone in Google Chrome independently from system time on their PC. For different reasons, changing your time at the OS level may break other functionality, such as backup schedules, encryption keys, and security certificates. So how can one change time specifically in Google Chrome without messing with their OS? Read on to find out.

Changing the time in Google Chrome browser

Most web users are skeptical about using JavaScript while conducting their business online, as they feel it may compromise their safety. There’s a never-ending discussion regarding whether or not to use JavaScript at all. While most users may feel that disabling JavaScript might make them less vulnerable to malicious attacks and malware, disabling it completely would take websites back to the way they looked 20 years ago.

The modern web is filled with advanced interactive elements, high responsiveness, constant refreshing, and other high-level features. Disabling JavaScript would prevent you from taking advantage of all these advantages, so it’s far from recommended. On this site, you can check if JavaScript is turned on in your browser and learn how to enable it.

What are time zones

A time zone is a region guided by a standard local time as legally stated by the country. Commonly, most countries may have a single time zone. Larger countries like Canada or the USA have multiple time zones. At the same time, China uses only one time zone even though it’s a relatively larger country.

GMT is an abbreviation for Greenwich Mean Time, the clock time at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, U.K., located at longitude zero. This acts as the datum. UTC, Coordinated Universal Time is the correct GMT replacement since it’s based on International Atomic Time, which uses cesium atomic frequency to set time standard. Offset is the difference of time between UTC standard time and the local time.

Customizing the clock in Google Chrome

There are two ways to change the time zone in Chrome, and we’ll start with an extension called Time Shift. After downloading and installing the Chrome browser:

  • Start a new session.
  • Get the Time Shift extension from Chrome’s web store. You’ll find the extension button at the top right corner of the browser window.
  • Right-click it and select Options.

This opens a new tab where time settings are visible. By default, the time zone is in GMT, but the user can select the desired time zone from the drop-down list and conclude with more satisfactory settings in the adjacent windows.

Changes made here clearly reflect on all Chrome tabs. However, Chrome provides the option to turn off the extension by simply left-clicking on the icon that illustrates a clock. You just changed the time zone and time in your Chrome browser.

Alternatively, you can get the same end result by employing a simple command-line variable when starting up Chrome. For example:

[Path to Chrome]\Chrome.exe TZ=America/New_York

Just check the time zone you need is properly formatted, and you’re good to go! This method doesn’t require any extensions or digging through the settings. Furthermore, you can create as many shortcuts for Google Chrome, each with a different associated time zone, and run them as needed!

Final thoughts

Chrome is one of the most user-friendly browsers around. With the Time Shift extension (or the command line variable), the browser allows users to choose or change their time zones effortlessly. While most casual users will most likely never need a feature like this, others might find it very useful. It’s a great way to protect privacy, test web apps, calendar functionality, and other time-dependent functions before deploying.

Story by Mia Thomson

augusta free press
augusta free press