Google Chrome is the #1 web browser in the world, but should it be?

StatCounter-browser-ww-monthly-201207-201307

Google Chrome is the world’s most popular web browser according to StatCounter, with over 40 percent of the market. This comes as no surprise since the big G has put a lot of work Chrome over the past few years, making it more attractive to users than any other modern browser today.

With Chrome on top of the world, Internet Explorer has no chance but to play second fiddle with little over 30 percent share of the market, followed by Firefox with 20 percent and Safari under 9 percent. It’s still quite a shocker to see the once powerful Firefox so far behind after changing the browser landscape in the past. In fact, it was Firefox that paved the way for Google Chrome to dominate.

The big question that needs answering is if Google Chrome deserves to be on top in its current form. Well, I haven’t conducted any scientific tests, so you can take this with a grain of salt if you wish, but I feel Chrome has become more and more bloated over the past year or so. Arguably, the best web browser at the moment is Opera Next. The new Blink rendering engine by Google, which powers Chrome, is the same that powers Opera Next. Yet for some strange reason, Opera Next is faster and more responsive than Chrome in almost every test thrown at it. Give Opera Next a spin if you’re finding it difficult to believe.

Let us know in the comments below which browser is your favorite, and why.

[via StatCounter]

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20 comments

  1. Christian Winslett

    [@etim]

    I am one of them. I use internet explorer because it is still relatively just as fast as my other internet browsers. In fact, it is about 3 times faster that my chrome browser. I do use an alternative browser most of the time. It’s called Comodo Icedragon. It’s a derivative of firefox, except it’s safer and it looks better. It also runs relatively faster than modern version firefox browsers. In the few times that Comodo acts up, I use IE 11 to do browsing. It’s fast, effective, safe, and always works.

  2. J.L.

    [@vandamme] Not all of them, especially the older ones. Even Jelly Bean ships with the stock webkit “Internet” browser.

    Have you checked the link for which platforms they track? Sorry, too lazy to disable my adblockers (which includes HOSTS).

  3. MarkQ

    “…….but should it be?”
    Well, if you have the kind of money that Google does (and can, therefore, entice nearly any vendor into bundling Chrome’s installer with their package) then why not? And that’s exactly why MOST of the active users of Chrome, as Daniel rightly points out, “aren’t really sure how they got it to begin with.” This is also the single most important reason why I’ve stayed away from Chrome and am determined to remain so.
    I’m not saying that Chrome isn’t a capable browser (based upon whatever little I’ve used it on others’ computers), but that this isn’t Chrome’s capability alone that has won it the #1 spot.

  4. Darcy

    Firefox has the features and add-ons I want in a browser. Since I can reconfigure it to get rid of the Chrome-like GUI and return it to the older look, I’m sticking with it. I’ve used Iron, which is as close as I will come to using a Chrome based browser, and Opera but neither of them have the few add-ons I consider essential.

    Firefox does have problems. The biggest one is their memory leak IMO. Also it’s inability to natively compress and optimize it’s database or clean older data out of it. Despite those limits, I consider it the best browser for my needs. If they would concentrate on cleaning up their flaws first, then on adding new features, I think they could reclaim their top spot.

  5. Joe Hone

    Chrome is based on the open source, community developed Chromium browser. Two years ago I switched to Chromium and find it faster than any of the others, including Chrome but without a lot of Chrome’s bloat. It is worth giving a try.

  6. Sandy

    The only reason IE even ranks is because the browser comes standard with computers, but it doesn’t mean people use it. Chrome is overall best…or chrome based (coolnovo, torch browser…) It’s a great platform, why mess with the best?

  7. vandamme

    Android devices come with Chrome, Windows devices come with IE. And people are too technically challenged to change them. So the chart may infer that people are using Android instead of Windows. If so, there is hope for the future; but we have to kill Google after it kills Microsoft.

  8. Alen

    I’ve used Fire Fox for years and now on version 22 and it works very well with no more crashes than any of the others I have. I heard that Chrome was insecure and I will not use it at all. I would recommend Fire fox to any one as a good and safe browser.

  9. JonE

    Simple Answer: NO! Sounds like Google shenanigans to me . . . . . . .

    [@Someguy] dotTech isn’t only about learning about new tech, software and such, but also about sharing ideas and opinions about those things. It’s a what do you think about this question thing. Express your opinion; it’s O.K.

  10. Someguy

    I like to read Dottech for a reason, and these types of article is one of the reasons I stay away from big IT sites like PCworld. Maybe it’s just me, but I get very annoyed with these articles, they state a fact and then ask us a question, give us your own opinion, and tell us what to do for a reason that we found out 10 seconds ago. What’s the point of this article? It’s interesting to know what browser is top or whatever, but why ask us whether it should be? It is, and there’s nothing you can do to change that. If you want to tell us to switch to Opera because of this or this, fine, tell us, but don’t ask us whether Chrome deserves to be top so you can tell us how bad or how good it is and what we should be doing.

    /EndRant

    I don’t think I got my point across how I wanted, but I hope you understand.

  11. Daniel

    More and more of my customers are switching to Chrome, but they aren’t really sure how they got it to begin with.
    More and more customers are complaining that firefox is slow, crashes too ofter, and those that don’t like firefox are using internet explorer.
    I have apple users as well, and even they are bypassing safari for chrome.
    Personally, I don’t understand the appeal.

  12. Sheldon Cooper, Phd

    I was under the impression that Chrome is the most secure of all the browsers for financial transactions.
    Is that only if you use the Comodo Dragon version?

    For general surfing I use Opera as I find it less cumbersome. If I need internet tools in a browser and cool add-ons, I open Firefox, which operates like a movie in slow motion and gives me a similar feeling like it’s carrying weights when it opens.

    Some say Safari is very good but I haven’t tried it. Some sites have problems with certain browsers. If I know the site isn’t loaded with goodies that Ghostery and Ad-block need to block, then I open the old reliable brower that loves showing ads, IE 10.

  13. Souter Johnny

    And what about everybody who went to the Google search page and was presented with the button in the top right corner offering to ‘upgrade’ your browser to Chrome?

    A lot of naive people would have clicked on that and ended up with Chrome as the default browser.

    Sticking with FF personally.

  14. Ashraf
    Mr. Boss

    [@Mags] It should be the number of active users. StatCounter provides web analytics for websites, meaning their numbers are the number of people who use Chrome when visiting a website that runs StatCounter.

  15. Mags

    My question is……….

    Are they using stats on the number of actual users, OR the number of installs. If the number of installs is used, then that stats are misleading. I’ve had Chrome installed on my pc a few times (an install where I was not given the option to say yes or no to the install) and immediately uninstalled it.

    If I remember correctly, the install of Chrome happened a couple of times when updating Adobe Flash, and once with Avast.

    I still prefer FF, but will give Opera Next a try.