Browser Wars

Feb 20, 2011 by

Web Browsers are one of the most used features on electronic devices today. This includes smartphones, iPods, tablets, laptops and desktops. With so many browsers out there, few people know which way to explore the web is best for them. So today, I decided to put the top 5 browsers to the test, and to see which one will come out on top.

This test will be performed on 64-bit Windows 7. Each browser has been opened and set up.

The Contenders

All versions are up to date, betas are not used.

  • Apple Safari 5
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 8
  • Google Chrome 9
  • Mozilla Firefox 3.6
  • Opera 11.01

CSS Interpretation

  • Safari – Webkit
  • Internet Explorer – Trident
  • Google Chrome – Webkit
  • Mozilla Firefox – Gecko
  • Opera – Presto

There’s gonna have to be a two-way tie here between Google Chrome and Safari. As web development advances, Webkit always delivers with accurate CSS interpretation. For example, “p{font-family: “Arial” arial sans-serif;}” is a line of CSS that I use very frequently to make my text Sans-Serif. Firefox does not recognize this and leaves it the default Serif font. Internet Explorer has a unique issue not seen on other browsers, its incorrect sizing of font makes it difficult to code for cross-browser support.

Look and Funtionality

For people who hate useless toolbars, anything besides Internet Explorer would be the way to go. If you want something ultra-slimmed down, the field is narrowed to Opera, Chrome and Safari, but Opera takes the cake this round. Every browser’s the same, they have an ugly menu bar to access print and save options, but Opera takes a different approach with the menu button. Yes, rather than wasting screen real estate with a menu bar, Opera packs it into one button and offers more than any browser I’ve seen. This button allows for quick and easy access to things like preferences and developer tools, as well as chat and email built right into the browser.
menu button

Speed

Loading New York Times (never opened and cache cleared)

  • Safari – 10.8 seconds
  • Chrome – 6.5 seconds
  • Internet Explorer – 6.8 seconds
  • Firefox – 7.9 seconds
  • Opera – 6.2 seconds

As shown above, Opera takes the win in yet another round with Chrome as a close second.

Ease

Time it takes to set homepage to apple.com.

  • Safari – 7.1 seconds
  • Chrome – 17.1 seconds
  • Internet Explorer – 8.1 seconds
  • Firefox – 5.2 seconds
  • Opera – 8.3 seconds

As shown above, Firefox takes the win with Safari as a close second.

Conclusion

5 points for 1st, 4 for 2nd, 3 for 3rd, 2 for 4th, 1 for 5th

  • Safari – 14
  • Chrome – 14
  • Internet Explorer – 8
  • Firefox – 13
  • Opera – 15

In one of the closest battles I have ever seen, the underdog Opera wins it all!

Please note that this should not be taken too seriously. All tests were made as accurately as possible.

Final standings

  1. Opera
  2. Safari and Chrome
  3. Firefox
  4. Internet Explorer

OPERA

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