Review: Google Chrome

I’ve never been one to recommend or even post much about beta releases, but this is one I feel may be of interest to my readers here at WindowsTalk.

If you are already using Google’s Chrome browser, you likely know how speedy it is compared to Internet Explorer and Firefox; at least I notice the difference on my Windows 7 laptop.

I was curious to try out the beta of it’s next version, v5 after reading this story over at ComputerWorld: “Google Speeds Up Chrome Browser” where this statement popped off the page at me:

Google Chrome 5.0.375.29, available in beta for the Linux, Mac and Windows operating systems, improved its speed and performance by 30% and 35% against the V8 and SunSpider benchmark tests, respectively, Google said.

So, I decided to risk trying out the beta. First, I went to the Google Chrome Beta page: http://www.google.com/landing/chrome/beta/ There, it informed me that my current version of Chrome (v4) would be upgraded to the latest beta version; I could not have both versions installed. Fair enough, and I appreciated knowing that. There is also a link to the Google Chrome Blog, where I could get more information regarding development of Chrome betas; well worth a look before diving right in to the download & upgrade process.

In just the few hours I have had it installed, I quite like it and have even installed two extensions, one for Twitter (Chromed Bird) and another that lets me view a page in Internet Explorer within Chrome (IE Tab), handy since some websites are designed specifically for IE and do not display properly in another browser like Chrome. I especially like this one since I use Roboform to store passwords and Roboform does not work with Chrome. Now, I can click on the IE Tab icon, and the page opens in an IE Tab in Chrome, complete with the Roboform toolbar.

There are many more extensions available, although they may not work as expected on a beta version of Chrome, so install these at your own risk.

For now, I will set my default browser to Chrome so I can try it out in my ‘real world’ setting here at home.

How about you? Are you using Chrome (v4 or v5)? Do you like it? Please share your thoughts below.