Initial Google Chrome Review

I listened to the announcement of Google Chrome this afternoon and also flipped through the comic book that Google released yesterday. My initial reaction was that Chrome is going to be just another browser that I’d need to support.

After going through the the Chrome info and checking it out…

GoogleOnChrome

… I noticed that most web applications and web sites do work with Chrome.

Most of the app plug-ins work, but only some of the time. I visited ABC.com and noticed that some of the Flash came up just fine, but others did not. Since I have Vista Ultimate, I made sure that the SideBar was closed and I closed out of iexplorer.exe and ieuser.exe from Task Manager. The same results appeared:

ABConChrome

The same happened with Silverlight and a few of the other plug-ins. While having just ABC.com open, I opened Vista’s task bar and noticed 3 instances of Chrome running. However, Chrome was only opened once.

taskmanager

I also opened up 5 tabs with CNN.com, weather.com, nbc.com, abc.com, and wikipedia.org. From the time I hit enter on the last browser tab, I timed how long it took for all 5 windows to finish processing. The Wikipedia.org (open tab) rendered 2nd as Cnn.com was finished before I typed wikipedia.org. However, the other 3 tabs in the background took longer. All 5 finished loading at around 23 seconds.

I also visited DropThings.com, a web 2.0 application built by Omar Al Zabir, to check out the AJAX support. The experience seemed to be about the same if not a little more sluggish than IE and wasn’t up to the same speed as FireFox 3.

The UI seems extremely clean and compact. It’s nice to go into the browser options and see only 3 tabs. Some of the options feel out of place and maybe the organization could be better, but it’s a start. I noticed that the password page did not have a master password to hide the passwords from other users that may access your system if it’s not locked or is compromised (like FireFox does).

I’m not 100% sure that the majority of users will understand the Incognito windows. Many businesses like the ability of locking down the IE history feature so that users cannot clear history.

The application shortcuts seem pretty neat. It provides an easy way to open up items like Gmail, other webmail sites, online ordering sites, etc.

Overall, Chrome has a pretty solid first beta. As long as this isn’t stuck in beta like Gmail, it looks like it will be a promising browser. It will be interesting to see the adoption rates.

If you have any other feedback, be sure to add it below!

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