Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Between 2 worlds! Firefox and Chrome

Why can't people get together and build a product that has only "good" features! But the world is not like that..is it? I switch back and forth between Firefox and Chrome due to this very reason. I like them and hate them at the same time.

Remarkably, my list of likes and dislikes is not so long. There are only one or two things that I dislike about these products but they have a very big impact in my (I think everyone else's too) browsing habits.

These are the specific things that gets on my nerves. While these may not effect other people, they directly collide with my web usage.

1. Firefox being bad!
  • Takes a long time to start.
  • Address bar does not support full google search (specially "define:" keyword)
  • Separate search box.
  • Separate download window. (There are some buggy add-ons to eliminate this)
2. Chrome being bad!
  • "Stop" button is at the right side. It should be moved to the left of the address bar.
  • Sometimes Tabs go "not responding" (more frequently than Firefox).
  • Some web pages are not rendered correctly.
3. Chrome being Good

Then I have the things which makes Chrome better than Firefox.
  • Really intelligent all-in-one address bar.
  • Simple and clean user interface.
  • Efficient use of screen real estate.
  • Download handling.
  • Starts up quickly.
Unfortunately, I don't have anything that makes Firefox stand out on Chrome. So right now there are 2 things that could make this world a better place:
  1. Make a Firefox that doesn't have bad features listed in (1).
  2. Make a Chrome that doesn't have bad features listed in (2).
I believe any of these things will produce a completely good browser. Personally I like the 2nd choice because I prefer Chrome due to its simpleness.

What's your choice? any thoughts?
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13 comments:

ශාකුන්තල said...

Chrome is the fastest browser. But, considering addons, I'd more prefer Firefox. My favourite is Adblock Plus. There are Firefox addons made for web hacking stuff too. So why leave Firefox?

girishadurrel said...

well I would go for IE8

Ravin Perera said...

@ශාකුන්තල
Being the fastest is where Chrome shines among others and Firefox thrives with countless third party Add-on support. I agree with u regarding web-debugging but I'm not much of a web developer! So I'd still go with Chrome!

Due to the reasons u mentioned, I don't think Chrome would be able to grab firefox's market share soon.

Ravin Perera said...

@Girisha
Really funny! That's the side I entirely omitted out of the discussion!!

Actually IE8 still feels bloated compared to Firefox and Chrome. But still, I read that 60% of companies use IE6 as their default browser. "IE6"!

H. Madhawa Ranga said...

2009 April Browser Statistics...
IE7 IE6 IE8 Fx
23.2% 15.4% 3.5% 47.1%
Chrome S O
4.9% 3.0% 2.2%
I too prefer Crome over FF, coz it's faster than any other browser. But hav to say this, FF has many addons which makes my wrk easier.
I too get the prob of the button placement of Crome, and also some sites are not shown in Crome correctly, yes.

K.C. Hewage said...

As my experience neither Firefox nor Chrome is faster than Maxthon.
But Maxthon has another issues(But It has lots of important features). If we consider about the portability, Firefox is the number one. Since Ravin talked about the cleanliness of the UI, I think Firefox should have a mechanism to change its UI as user's needs. As Ravin said, I don't think that Chrome would be able to grab the Firefox's market share soon until it has the portability.

@Girisha,
IEx is the worst web browser I ever seen. Because of being the default web browser for Windows, it has gained some popularity among normal users.

I use Firefox because most of the time I'm on Linux.

ශාකුන්තල said...

@K.C. Hewage,
Maxthon actually loads faster. But, Maxthon also uses the same Trident layout engine which is used/owned by IE. That means in speed, Maxthon is same as IE.

Have you heard about xAurora the shame? I came to know lot of facts about browsers in a very hot discussion here. You may also read that article and comments too. ;)

And, when considering portability, Maxthon comes first. You just have to copy the installed folder. It's lighter than Firefox.

And you say IE is worst.
Actually, heart of IE = heart of Maxthon :D
So Maxthon also bad?

Ravin Perera said...

Wow! this is gonna be a Browser war! I don't know about technical details of browser rendering engines. But Maxthon feels bit bulkier than Firefox and Chrome so I see no reason for using it just to get that extra edge of speed.

@Shakunthala
Thanks for the link. We've all heard about the story. according to Kasun, that story has appeared in Maxthon website as well. See the shame it can bring to Sri Lanka.

Btw, since this is starting to be a browser war, isn't anybody using Opera now?

Ravin Perera said...

Wow! just finished reading the blog fight abt xAurora. I thank all the guys for spending their valuable time with that matter.

K.C. Hewage said...

@ශාකුන්තල,

The speed of a web browser is not just depended on the layout engine. There are other parameters like connection maintaining, memory management, etc which also decide the speed of a web browser. Though Maxthon uses the same layout engine, some how it gained higher speed. I'm telling this with the experience of IE, Firefox, Chrome, Opera and Maxthon. Moreover, Maxthon has a very low memory consumption than other browsers. FYI, You can use Firefox's "about:config" to fine tune to gain higher performance. But do it with your own care.


What I meant by the portability should includes the availability to other platforms like Linux, Mac, etc. There is portable edition of Firefox that can be run on USB sticks without installing to the OS.

කාලිංග said...

I have totally move to Chrome after they came with 2.0.X, i mean totaly, im happy with that move, and since i didnt use any addon's with Firefox move was seamless for me.

i use to be a Safari fan back in the days since it use to render HTML faster, then Chrome start with the Webkit, yeah its the open engine of Safari. the great thing about Chrome is they have this V8 engine for Java, since its the age of AJAX, we need faster way to render not only HTML, JS as well.

so this some how made my day. till now i have used Chrome for every thing. and use IE8 as my backup.

ah, apart from the about, i like the way chrome is runs each component, page, tab as a separate process, so even if a Flash object crash on a page, it will not kill your browser or your tab, just that process.

Ravin Perera said...

I like Chrome's "process-per-tab" concept too. But I feel tabs are more prone to lagging. (maybe due to the communication overhead between the parent process and the child process)

As I've mentioned, tabs tend to get stucked. But I can close them always without closing the browser. Yet again I don't hv this problem in Firefox. For me it's kind of like the new process-based solution has created a new problem. Maybe it's only me..I don't know.

තිලිණ said...

for me firefox is for web developing stuff, can't live without firebug extention for debugging styles and javascript.. And Chrome is my defualt browser for all the surfing. Running all major browsers to check website and webapp ui cross browser comps.

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