Chromium Review (OSX)
Even while still in development for OSX and Linux the Google Chrome (Open source project called Chromium) browser is looking better and better everyday. I recently started testing Chromium on a daily basis on my Mac running Snow Leopard and have been quite impressed. The overall speed is what really impresses me the most. It is fast. However, while it is definitely blazing, it’s not without its fair share of bugs and quirks.
As I mentioned before, it is still in development and you can definitely tell. Not all of the features are implemented yet, it crashes randomly (often enough that it may annoy you after a while), and even some of the implemented features don’t work fully (e.g. the bookmarks importing feature doesn’t seem to work too well). Though even with the bugs, I’m still impressed. There is definitely a lot of potential in this browser (as if we didn’t already know that since it runs on Windows so nicely), but, I can see why they would want to completely re-write the browser from scratch as opposed to just porting it over to the other platforms from Windows.
Currently the browser is probably stable enough to use it as a secondary browser (realistically), however, I have set it as my default browser to make myself test it and push it to the limits. I wouldn’t recommend you use it as your main browser, unless you are crazy like me (or just like to be on the cutting edge). The basic stuff works, such as flash, bookmarks (you can bookmark pages, however, the bookmark manager doesn’t work yet, but download manager does), view source, history, themes (if you happen to like the ugly themes – more on that in another post), and even incognito mode.
More of the advanced stuff still isn’t implemented yet though. Features such as the task manager, bookmark manager, and a number of the preferences (mostly under the hood stuff) still aren’t implemented fully or available. Also as I mentioned even if it appears to be implemented it may not be completely implemented. For example, I wasn’t able to import my bookmarks as I mentioned earlier, but, additionally, I was able to make my browser go full screen, but couldn’t get it out of full screen without restarting it. Little things like that will happen to you when you play with software in development – it is to be expected.
Chromium is updated frequently (sometimes multiple times a day) and I recommend you try and stay up-to-date with the latest builds. Thankfully, TechCrunch has released a Chromium updater for OSX to help make the task of staying up to date easier. All you have to do is download the little application and run it, it will do the rest.
I would definitely recommend you at least check out Chromium (download here) if you are somewhat of a power-user or someone interested in testing the latest stuff.
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