Google Chrome Named Fastest Browser–But Is It?


Recently, I wrote an item on speed tests for next-generation browsers where Firefox 3.1 and Google Chrome showed particularly strong performance. In these kinds of tests, most users have been focusing on JavaScript tests, because both Firefox 3.1 and Google Chrome feature much improved JavaScript engines. Now, ExtremeTech is out with a battery of speed results that are particularly notable for the number of diverse tests run, although I still have one problem with the results.

ExtremeTech’s test methodology includes an array of different benchmarks, and leaves room for the notion that speed in this or that area may be particularly useful for certain kinds of users. In their Final Results roundup, even though it is still in early development, Google Chrome emerges the winner.

The problem I have with the ExtremeTech tests is that they used Firefox version 3.0.4 and not the beta version of Firefox 3.1 (they do acknowledge making this decision deliberately). The new JavaScript features are found only in that new beta, and that beta is what most other current tests are using. Still, it can be argued that testing shipping browsers sets a level playing field. ExtremeTech’s collection of benchmarks for the tests included Google’s V8 test for JavaScript speed, SVG (scalable vector format) tests, Acid3 (a test for web standards), plus Canvas, Flash and DOM tests.

One of the more interesting sets of results from the tests came from the Acid3 evaluations, where browsers were asked to play an animation using default settings, with the results compared to a reference image. It’s essentially a compatibility test that involves speed. Here, Opera emerged as the winner, and Google Chrome came in last.

Chrome dusted the other browsers off, though, in the JavaScript tests (which are Google’s tests). This may very well change, though, when Firefox 3.1 is finalized with its new JavaScript features. I’m already using the beta, and it is plenty fast.

In the end, Chrome accumulated 30 points on a rating scale to win, with Firefox second in the ExtremeTech tests. Both Internet Explorer 7 and Safari “did not place.” This comparison is definitely due for an update when the new version of Firefox is finalized, but there is no question that Chrome is a fast and well-rounded browser despite its young age.



K-MeleonCCF ME 0.09 Beta4 V1 ( ) is fast too.

Compare to Safari 4 and Chrome 0.4 it can easily match it from a user point of view.

If a numerical test could be carried out on it it would be very interesting to see how it stand up to the other.


Since Chrome is in beta, isn’t it more fair to test it against Webkit instead of Safari?

Comments are closed.