Humble New Tab Page is a free Chrome extension which offers a lightweight but versatile replacement for your new tab page.

Unlike most of the competition, this add-on is entirely frill-free. There's no bandwidth wasted by downloading gigabytes of HD photos, no glossy icons or graphics, no pointless search box which you'll never use anyway. Instead you just get some simple text links and menus.

Clicking "Bookmarks bar" expands that link to list every site on your bookmarks bar, for instance, or you can tap "Recent Bookmarks" to view your latest discoveries.

More general browsing links display your most visited sites and recently-closed tabs, while an "Other Devices" menu displays open tabs in other devices logged in with your Google account.

Elsewhere, an Apps menu displays installed apps and launches them with a click.

There's even a Weather forecast, although it's so minimalist you may not notice. Enter your location first (Settings > Weather > Location) and a single line appears with the current temperature and conditions. Click this and it expands with a 5-day forecast.

A detailed Settings page enables tweaking some of these features (set the number of links or recently-closed tabs to display, etc), or you can disable any you don't need.

Humble New Tab Page also offers a huge number of visual customisations: fonts, colours, layout, animation, an optional background image, even a way to include your own CSS snippets if you're feeling especially creative.

Verdict

A simple new tab page which replaces the usual glossy graphics with a nicely-chosen and highly configurable set of bookmark and browsing tools.