Everyone has heard about Google’s first dive into the web browser market with their shiny new Chrome web browser. I’ve given the browser a try, and did some simple usability comparisons with it, and Mozilla’s Firefox 3. I must say that the browser does “feel” lighter, kind of like back in the day when Netscape decided to break Netscape Communicator into smaller components, separating out the e-mail client and composer application from the browser itself.. this just felt more responsive, and less bulky; this is what it feels like to use Chrome. However, this is just an illusion.
Firefox 3 is just as fast as Google Chrome in many respects (and in some cases much faster). However it still feels like good old Firefox. Why? Because the interface is almost identical to Firefox 2! Why change something that works, something that people like?
Google Chrome does have some nice features which the Mozilla guys have been working toward already, such as process independence for tabs, allowing you run each tab in it’s own isolated memory space – thus preventing one tab from crashing and taking down the rest of your web browser with it. Mozilla has had a version of Firefox available in Mozilla Labs called Prism, which does exactly the same thing. Although it’s still in development stages, it works great, and I use it every day for browsing GMail, Google Reader, etc.
The main problem I have with Google Chrome (seriously) is that.. it just isn’t Firefox. I know that may sound biased or prejudiced, but here’s my resoning.