If you don’t mind a few bugs, lack of Flash and a lot of speed, you may want to give the new Google Chrome (Chromium) builds a try.  The repository is being updated almost hourly.

First impressions:

  • It doesn’t come with Flash but Flash can be installed and will be in future versions
  • It is really fast.  Even with several tabs going, it is Safari 4 type fast.
  • Each tab is a seperate process (see below).  Each one takes 1GB of Virtual Memory but less than 100MB of real RAM.
  • It doesn’t run 64-Bit in Snow Leopard yet, only 32-Bit.  It also doesn’t run on PowerPC, the first Mac browser not to do so.
  • Ironically, it tripped up on GMail (with several Labs features enabled) which Firefox and Safari handle just fine
  • I’m doing this post in Chromium…and spel chek doesn’t work.  Neither do file uploads

Google is ramping up the publicity of the browser by airing several TV spots which it hopes will spread awareness of the browser.  

The Chrome browser is based on the same Webkit platform that Safari, Symbian’s browser and Adobe’s Air are based on.  Firefox has responded to Chrome by making tabs their own processes in upcoming builds.  Many people think that Safari 4’s tab layout is inspired by Chrome as well.


The browser wars certainly seem to be back on.

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