Google Chrome

I’m considering giving up my reviews of Internet browsers in the future; things are changing far too quickly to keep abreast of developments and it seems once I’ve got on top of things the entire playing field changes dramatically and I have to start again from scratch.Some might argue that I spend too much time on the subject of web browsers but due to the huge differences between them, along with the large amount of time the average user spends using one, I would have to disagree.

It was always surprising that given Googles’ prominence in the Search Engine market, they hadn’t created a browser of their own but rather chosen to focus their software on themes un-associated with their core business activity; Earth, Picasa and Sketchup to name just a few.At the beginning of last week however, completely out of the blue, they announced Google Chrome ( and then released it days later.

This is an interesting shake up of the browser market which is currently dominated by Internet Explorer and Firefox (and to a lesser extent Opera).Remember that although a new entrant, Google have some fantastic developers and bucket loads of cash to throw at this project.

Whilst still in beta (testing) stage I thought it might be worth compiling a list of why you will possibly find yourself switching in the not too distant future:

It’s stable – Due to the fact that all tabs are run independently from one another, one unstable page won’t bring down the whole browser along with any other currently open pages.Although still in beta I am yet to crash Chrome.

It’s fast – This is possibly an understatement; the program opens in seconds and renders pages extremely quickly.Due to the multi-process architecture mentioned above, one slow tab won’t affect the speed of any other opened pages.

Clean Interface – Rather than consuming large amounts of screen space, Chrome is incredibly compact.It does take a little getting used to but eventually you almost forget that you are actually using a browser.

Intelligent Address Bar – Much like the fantastic address bar in Firefox, Chrome allows you to start typing a phrase and will immediately attempt to find a match from all your previously visited websites and bookmarks.If no matches are found, hit return and Google will do a web search to attempt to find other suitable matches.

Dynamic Home Page – As you use Chrome it will remember the sites that you visit most often, your preferred choice of search engine, tabs that you have recently closed and recent bookmarks and display it on your home page unless you specify otherwise.

Of course, there are still some drawbacks to the application; we haven’t adopted it at work just yet due to the fact the option to print preview and print backgrounds are completely absent; these are both critical for our web based invoice run.The application also doesn’t yet support add-ins which are a technology that have been a huge factor in the success of Firefox.Possibly most importantly, the browser is still in Beta stage so many would consider it unproven and prone to problems, including potential security risks.

Whilst I am excited about the shake up this could bring to the browser industry, I am worried that rather than harming Internet Explorer (which, despite being inferior, is still the most popular browser as a result of being bundled with Windows), Chrome will just draw experienced users away from other quality browsers such as Firefox and Opera.


About the Author - Chris Holgate works for Refresh Cartridges who supply a wide range of printer cartridges at the UK’s lowest prices.