Posted By RichC on November 9, 2008
Although I’ve installed IE7, Firefox and Safari browsers on my Vista OS Notebook, I was curious to see just how Google Chrome would compare. It surely is a simple install and quickly handled a variety of initial websurfing tasks. I enjoyed the out of the box minialist look and feel and loved getting back some of my screen real estate. Of course this is my own fault since I’ve fattened up my title bars on Firefox to include odds and ends that aren’t really necessary; I generally have the “bookmark toolbar” open as well as the “navigation toolbar” as well as the RSS feed in a sidebar. Recently I’ve been keeping the “Google toolbar” open and along with the header added together steals about an inch and a quarter off the top of my browser window. Out of the box, Chrome takes up just about 5/8 of an inch. From that point, the Google Chrome browser is refreshing.
As for usability, I’ve not used Chrome enough to run it through too many websites, but the ones I have it is just fine.
I love the “movable tabs” feature (demo above) which permits shuffling the order of open tabs and also found the automatic search feature built into the URL address bar convenient. The one click bookmarking feature was a nice addition (also in Firefox 3) and one of my favorites is the multi-tab websurfers is the crash control feature. Unlike IE and Firefox, Google Chrome is a multi process browser meaning that each tab in Chrome runs a separate process. With a hang up on a page or crash, only that tab will get closed and rest of the tabs will keep working … now that’s nice if you run multiple tabs instead of multiple windows. Finally, Google Chrome might be the best browser for ‘shared computers’ in it will operate in an incognito mode which allows more privacy and therefore security. Tabs can be opened in incognito mode and as soon as the tab is closed, Google Chrome cleans up the browse history and cookies data.
All in all, I’m not planning to switch from Firefox 3, but just like Google’s start in smartphone operating systems, they will start to chip away at the installed base established by Microsoft, Apple and Mozilla.
(wrote and posted this using the Google Chrome browser)