Has Google Chrome Turned into the Browser That We Love to Hate?
From eating away at your RAM to power-driving your CPU, is Google Chrome getting too hungry for its users to bear? Let’s have a closer look at the Super Beast.
Most people use Google Chrome nowadays. It’s the world’s most popular browser. Seeing as practically every device running on Android comes with Google’s browser pre-installed, it’s no wonder that this is the case. On top of that, the browser’s support for Google services that we all increasingly rely on makes it an attractive option for most web users.
On top of this, the Google Chrome browser is just arguably the best browser out there. It’s an incredibly attractive design that most of its biggest competitors – including Microsoft – have surrendered to. The Chromium design for browsers is used by everyone from Google to Brave to Microsoft to power the world’s best browsers.
But has Google Chrome got too much of an appetite? It seems that more and more people are complaining about how much RAM and CPU it eats up while it’s running. On top of this, more and more people are deciding that Google has a little too much information on them and would rather not hand over their web history to the tech giant that will likely shape the future of machine learning and AI.
What’s the problem?
The most common complaint about Google Chrome is that it eats your computer’s RAM liken a hungry lion munching on a gazelle. It’s a pretty terrifying experience to behold when you open up Task Manager and actually look at how much of your RAM and CPU are being taken up by the thing.
This means that performing other tasks on your laptop with Chrome open is a nightmare and will slow down the performance of your device. That’s annoying. This has always been an issue with the Google browser. The company has tried to tone it down a bit, but with little success and it remains a RAM-consuming monster.
On top of this, Google has routinely removed useful features from the browser without consulting what its users actually want. The company simply sees that certain features aren’t being used by many people and then gets rid of them. In fairness, this could go some way to reducing the amount of RAM the browser consumes, but they should still be asking their users what they actually want from the browser that they use so much.
Competition on the back heels
If Google isn’t careful, then might end up losing a lot of users to other browsers like Firefox’s upgraded Quantum, or the new Microsoft Edge browser – which is also built on Chromium. On top of that, there’s Brave Browser – also built on Chromium – which is familiar enough for Chrome users to switch to seamlessly. With this, you can simply import all of your extensions and bookmarks directly, making the change very simple.
There are increasingly more alternatives to Chrome that look at where Google’s browser lacks and work to fill in the gap with their own unique features and designs. Google Chrome users have never had more options to leave than they do now. There’s much more out there now than just Firefox and Edge – although even these are now viable alternatives.
Firefox gets fast
The problem with one of Chrome’s most-loved rivals was always speed. Firefox has been adored by its fans thanks to it being a non-profit browser built around user-privacy. But for a long time, the browser simply couldn’t keep up with the speeds offered by Google. Obvious, this turned a lot of people off.
That has changed now with Firefox Quantum. The recent update to the Firefox browser has completely overhauled the underlying mechanics of the whole thing and it now offers speeds comparable – even faster in some tests – to those of Google Chrome.
With top-of-the-pile privacy features and a loyal fan-base, Firefox is well positioned to make some serious gains on the frustration of Google Chrome’s users.
A Brave new world
Another serious entry into the mix is a privacy and ad blocking browser with a unique way to reward the websites that users actually visit. Brave browser was created by one of the co-founders of Mozilla and the idea is to turn online advertising on its head.
Brave blocks all ads on the net without discrimination. It does a better job that ad block extensions – it literally goes into the code and writes out ads as the webpage loads. This is a really useful feature, although it does leave content creators and advertisers at a big loss. So Brave has come up with a solution to reward the creators that users actually like.
By using BAT – basic attention tokens – build from the Ethereum coin, Brave rewards users for watching ads with actual money. This can then be used to expand your portfolio of crypto-currency, or it can be donated to websites that you like in the form of a tip.
You can opt not to see any ads, or you can see so many per hour, based on your own preference, to receive the rewards. This is an interesting new way to deal with ads. The browser is built on Chromium, so it’s very familiar to Chrome users, and it has a stunning design.
Thanks to the extensive ad and tracker blocking, Brave browser actually loads pages a lot quicker than Chrome, and it will tell you exactly how much time you’ve saved – and how many ads and trackers you’ve blocked – on the homepage. It also uses a lot less RAM than Chrome.
Users are increasingly concerned about privacy, and more than a third of online users now use an ad blocker. These things are all issues that most people will consider second to a browser’s everyday performance, however. Google Chrome eats way too much RAM, and it’s turning users off. Combine this with privacy concerns and you have a recipe for a mass exodus. Google should bear this in mind with future updates.