Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Official Google Blog: A fresh take on the browser

At Google, we have a saying: “launch early and iterate.” While this approach is usually limited to our engineers, it apparently applies to our mailroom as well! As you may have read in the blogosphere, we hit "send" a bit early on a comic book introducing our new open source browser, Google Chrome. As we believe in access to information for everyone, we've now made the comic publicly available -- you can find it here. We will be launching the beta version of Google Chrome tomorrow in more than 100 countries.

this is the googles first release of their newest browser and i ended up using it so i can have a guide and a review for this nice window on my desktop

Official Google Blog: A fresh take on the browser

Google Chrome - Speed
The first thing you will notice about Google Chrome is the speed of it. It is fast - I mean REALLY fast! Google Chrome also loads from scratch in less than a second on my machine and I have never seen any browser download a web page faster.
Google Chrome - Page display
These are the very early stages of using Chrome, but thus far - every site I have visited looks pretty much the same as on FF3. This is in stark contrast to the current beta of Internet Explorer 8; which even in ‘compatibility mode’ renders some pages very poorly.
Google Chrome - Ease of use
Within seconds I was able to find my way around the Google Chrome browser. It looks pretty basic, which I really like. You will quickly notice that there’s no dedicated search bar. Instead, you use the address bar and it will automatically do a search using your favourite search engine (you get to choose!)
The settings section is very basic and easy to understand. There are not that many options, compared with IE and Firefox.
Google Chrome - Nifty tricks
You are going to be hearing a LOT about the Google Chrome’s ‘Incognito mode‘. It allows you to surf websites without that website appearing in your browser’s history folder. Also, any new cookies triggered from your incognito mode tab will be deleted when you close it. When you have a tab open in incognito mode, you get a little picture of a detective in the top left corner - so you can tell at a glance which mode you are in.
You can slide tabs around to arrange them in the right order - and they actually do slide. It’s a nice effect!
Your bookmarks are automatically imported as soon as you install Google Chrome and your shortcuts will appear in the same order that they appeared in your previous browser - so everything’s where you expect it to be.
When you download a file, there’s a little animation of an arrow that plays - another nice little touch!
Google Chrome issues
As you would expect from a brand new beta, it’s not perfect! Here are a few known problems from the Google Chrome help center and one of my own. You can see the full list of known issues here.
- Google Calendar - If you create an all day event at the weekend it adds an extra day!
- Laptops sometimes won’t go to sleep with Google Chrome running!
- Fixed Width fonts on some sites are tiny on Google Chrome!
- Fellow WordPress bloggers will find some of the posting tools behaving ‘odd.’
As you can probably tell, I am really impressed. Google Chrome is fast, easy to use and very polished for a beta release. I will have to play with it for a few more days to get a REAL feel for it, but my initial impressions are very positive.
Knowing what Google are like, Chrome will probably stay in beta for ages. It seems very solid and the feedback I have received from friends is that they are finding it equally stable.
The so-called browser wars have taken an interesting turn and I am not sure if this little baby is not going to be the winner. How crazy is that? After years of the ‘experts’ telling us that it’s either Internet Explorer or Firefox who will win - there’s a new kid in town who ‘might’ win the war (and far sooner than many imagined!)

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