Interface design is, of course, important here, but convenience is also crucial. This means things like tab management, layout and minor quality-of-life features also play a big part.
Instead of minimizing tabs to the point of illegibility, Safari implements horizontal scrolling once you reach a certain number of tabs. Furthermore, the browser comes with an overview, which presents your tabs with large icons, making them easy to identify and distinguish from each other. Unfortunately, the browser also feels pretty clunky.
Moreover, the tab bar is completely hidden when you only have one tab open. Instead of a more traditional tab menu, Safari tries to make the tabs look like a deck of cards.
Which Browser Is Better On Mac: Safari Or Chrome?
The settings are also located outside of the browser. This is an intentional standard that Apple tries to encourage all apps to use, but this is generally ignored by other browsers that keep most of their settings located inside the app itself, which we think is a much better approach. One fantastic convenience feature that stands out in Chrome is the ability to instantly do a reverse Google search on any image. This allows you to easily find similar pictures or the original source of the image.
The Mac version of the browser is fast, though not the fastest, as browsers like Firefox and Vivaldi read our Vivaldi review outperform it. However, on iOS, Safari is easily the fastest browser we tested, which probably has a lot to do with the browser being developed by Apple itself and thus perfectly optimized for the platform. Safari also uses very little RAM when compared to other browsers, especially those based on Chromium read our Chromium review , which is a huge bonus for older devices or users who like to keep a lot of tabs open at the same time.
Chrome also does well when it comes to performance. The same is true on mobile, where it also achieves very good speed, though not as good as Safari. Unfortunately, RAM usage is also very high, which is a problem that Chrome — as well as other Chromium-based browsers — is infamous for. Both Chrome and Safari are very fast browsers.
Chrome is the faster of the two on desktop, while Safari achieves greater speeds on iOS. Thus, this round comes down to resource consumption, where Safari is easily the winner, frequently using as little as half the RAM that Chrome does to achieve the same results. Now that Safari has avoided an early knockout by winning in performance, Chrome gets another chance to achieve victory as we move on to browser security. This is a task that the database does well, though it does send significant amounts of information about your browsing to Google, which is a serious privacy concern.
Update frequency is arguably one of the most important aspects of browser security , as cybercriminals are constantly on the hunt to exploit new weaknesses in the code. Because of this, web browsers should ideally receive a security update every two or three weeks, at the minimum, but sadly Safari falls far short of this.
Why you’re stupid if you don’t use Safari on your MacBook
Chrome is one of the most secure web browsers around, and it should come as no surprise that the browser also uses Google Safe Browsing to block shady or malicious websites. As we covered above, this is a solid choice for security, but comes with its own share of privacy concerns. Even though there are several similarities between the two browsers on security, in the end Safari stood no real chance of winning this round. Since Chrome scored its third point in the last round, it has already secured the overall victory in this battle.
Important things to keep in mind in this round are data collection policies, the track record of each company and privacy controls. Ideally, users should be able to pick and choose what kinds of cookies they want to allow, as certain types are far less malicious than others. Surprisingly, Apple actually has a fairly clean track record on privacy compared to other tech giants.
Best web browser for Mac: Safari, Chrome, Firefox and more - Macworld UK
Significant privacy scandals are few and far between for the company, and it even scored itself some positive press on the issue when it refused to cooperate with authorities to unlock encrypted devices. That said, the policy makes it clear that Apple can collect all sorts of information about people who use its products, including names, IP addresses, physical locations and more.
It also reserves the right to share this information for a variety of vague reasons that could easily be applied to almost any scenario. Search queries are also collected by Apple, but the company claims that these are not tied to specific users. Few companies are as dodgy on privacy as Google.
Since the company bases the majority of its revenue and business model on the distribution of ads, collecting and using your browsing data is a crucial part of its operations. Google is also incredibly untrustworthy on this issue, and everything it says should be taken with a large grain of salt. Several Google features that compromise privacy are also enabled by default, such as search prediction and URL suggestions.
At the end of the day, neither browser is a great choice for privacy. Regardless of which of these browsers you use, their stances on privacy means you should check out our anonymous browsing guide. That slows you down, and uses resources. Safari is different. Apple offers a content blocking API, which extension makers can use to prevent ads from ever being downloaded in the first place. As Apple explains to developers :.
Content-blocking rules are created in a structured format ahead-of-time, declaratively, rather than running extension-provided code at the moment a decision about blocking needs to be made. WebKit compiles the ruleset into a bytecode format that it can process efficiently at runtime, reducing latency between when a page request is created and when it is dispatched over the network. Safari does not request undesired content. By avoiding unnecessary or unwanted downloads, Safari uses less memory and has better performance.
If this sounds like nonsense to you, download Wipr in Safari and compare it to your Google Chrome setup.
Safari offers a built-in way to deal with this: Reader Mode. This makes reading a lot more pleasant.
And while there are alternatives to this for Chrome, they all come as browser extensions or bookmarklets, and none work very quickly or seamlessly, at least in my experience. Every time I try to quit Safari, Reader Mode is what pulls me back in. Your tabs and bookmarks sync seamlessly, and Continuity is fully supported. Your read list syncs from phone to laptop. Passwords saved on one device are accessible on another.
We could go on. Chrome does this as well, but you have to use Chrome on your iPhone too—but Safari is the default browser in iOS, with no way to change it. We could not have written this article five years ago. The Best Tech Newsletter Anywhere. Join , subscribers and get a daily digest of news, comics, trivia, reviews, and more.