Remember when Google Chrome was fast? Remember when it was stable? Remember when you could have multiple tabs open without it crashing? I do as well. Unfortunately those days seem to be over.
Recently, I read an article on The Next Web by Owen Williams entitled “why I’m breaking up with chrome” and, frankly, I couldn’t agree with him more. You can see the original article here.
I’ve been using Google Chrome since its very inception. I found it to be a revelation in comparison with many of the other browsers out in “the world”. Its ability to sandbox individual tabs kept rogue websites from bringing down the entire browser. Sure, every once in awhile it would give you the “He’s Dead, Jim” or ” Aw, Snap!” error messages. This was a small price to pay, however, for the speed and stability that it offered. Now, however, that stability – and especially that speed – seems to be a distant memory.
Owen goes into more detail as to how Chrome has “runaway resource usage” but his major problem seems to be with battery usage on his Mac Book Pro. Without giving you a bunch of charts and graphs, my experience has been quite similar, resulting in a slow degradation of the user experience over time. On my HP dual core processor with over 4 gigs of ram, things slow to a crawl with over five or six tabs open (depending, naturally, on the loaded sites). With my spare laptop with a single core and 1 gig, more than a couple of tabs will bring the entire thing to a screeching halt.
It is for this reason that I started using Firefox again for my day-to-day browsing usage and Midori for light browsing (I’m using Linux Mint). Usually, I keep both open at the same time, Firefox for my productivity apps such as email and Midori for search and general browsing and/or research. Don’t get me wrong; Firefox had it’s issues in the past as well. There was a point in time when Firefox was a notorious memory hog – which was my reason for switching to Chrome in the first place. Recently, however, it has gotten considerably more stable.
At the conclusion of his article Owen mentions several alternatives that he is considering to replace Chrome. The last of these (barely mentioned, by the way) is Vivaldi. After visiting Vivaldi’s home page, I was intrigued and decided to try it out. With not quite a week of usage, I must say I am impressed. The speed reminds me of the old days with Chrome. Fast, fast, and fast. Sure…there aren’t are extension (yet) and sure, it crashes occasionally. But did I mention that it’s fast?
For the time being, I’m sticking with Firefox as my primary browser, but I am now using Vivaldi as my secondary browser because I am anxious to follow their development. Given the history of their management and development teams, I am pulling for them in the browser space and look forward to them expanding to the mobile arena.
You can check out Vivaldi here: vivaldi browser
Available for Windows, Mac and Linux