AfterDawn: Tech news

Google Chrome released - first impressions

Written by Jari Ketola @ 02 Sep 2008 17:47 User comments (51)

Google Chrome released - first impressions The eagerly awaited Google Chrome web browser has been released, and is now available for download. The browser includes a lot of promising features - features that have clearly been thought through rather thoroughly.
One of the most prominent new features is the new "new tab" page. Normally when you open a new tab you are presented with either your home page or an empty page. By default Google Chrome presents you with thumbnail screen shots of your most visited pages and a box for searching through your page history. The browser adjusts to the way you use it - not vice versa. Unlike regular page history that is able to search through page names and URLs, Chrome's history search looks for matches in the actual contents of the pages as well.

There's a lot of cool features under the hood, too. Each tab runs in its own process, so one malfunctioning page, at worst, crashes the tab it is running in - not the whole browser. In whole the browser is designed to meet the needs of modern day web users and web pages.

Based on brief, one hour testing, Google Chrome shows a lot of promise, but still has plenty of bumps to iron out before being really able to compete with Firefox, Internet Explorer or Opera.

Download Google Chrome now and let us know what your first impressions are!

Previous Next  

51 user comments

12.9.2008 18:10

using it just now- so far nice, quick and a clean interface

22.9.2008 18:21

Not bad for starters. If it ever gets as customizable as FF or Opera then this will be a killer ap.

32.9.2008 18:38

Haven't used it yet (will wait for a final release) but it looks very promising. If it has as much support from third-party plugins as Firefox it will be a decent competitor indeed.

42.9.2008 18:45

So far so good. I agree if it gets customizable like FF and Opera it's going to be great.

52.9.2008 18:50

I've just installed it and am giving it a test-run. As of right now, I am enjoying it. I keep noticing little features, which is kind of cool. I highly dislike how I can't click my mouse-scroll-wheel down and drag the page up/down; I can live with it, though.

I must say, I feel like I'm cheating on FireFox.


I'm too lazy to ponder a witty signature at the moment. ;)

62.9.2008 19:54

Quote:
Each tab runs in its own process, so one malfunctioning page, at worst, crashes the tab it is running in - not the whole browser.
That is a nice feature, my only worry would be that this would turn into some sort of memory leak and hog anything left of your systems memory.

However, I am sure they thought ahead while making this and made sure it wouldn't happen.

72.9.2008 20:12

I just installed it and love how sleek the application is. Looks like another awesome product from Google.

82.9.2008 20:23

The fine print

Quote:
"By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any content which you submit, post or display on or through, the services. This license is for the sole purpose of enabling Google to display, distribute and promote the services and may be revoked for certain services as defined in the additional terms of those services."




92.9.2008 21:38

Quote:
The fine print

Quote:
"By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any content which you submit, post or display on or through, the services. This license is for the sole purpose of enabling Google to display, distribute and promote the services and may be revoked for certain services as defined in the additional terms of those services."

Of course. I didn't even have to read that to know it. Yahoo and Google both believe they own everything you type into their "free" services. Now Google will track everything you do and everything you download. Google will make your computer a part of its search engine.

102.9.2008 21:46

Ok I am going to be labled a fanboy for this but I do not care. Currently my Desktop is loaded with IE8 Beta 2, FF3, and Chrome. I have been trying to compare the three feature for feature and so far I am not "Wowed" by Chrome. I did not like FF2 and I must say FF3 is better but still not Wowed. I will admit the IE7 was very slow but I have been using IE8 beta 2 since its release and it is considerably faster and on par with FF3 and Chrome when it comes to speed. Most pages load fine in all 3 but there are still some that just work better in IE. The other browsers sometimes just don't have the support for certain pages. I know many will say that is the fault of the web page programmer/designer but these are the same people that will blame program and driver problems on Windows so I will play the game and blame it on the browser. I know some will ask for examples of these pages and I will attempt to compile a list. There aren't many so far but these are pages I visit frequently so compatibility is important to me even if it turns out that other browsers load the page a few microseconds faster.

I have done these tests using the browsers installed with no add-ins other than the typical plugins like flash and java etc...

I find that IE8 has and will have many of the features that Chrome is bragging about. Things like the private browsing mode (google calls it icognito mode), crash recovery, and recent websites and searches displayed when a new tab is open.

So maybe its the customizable features that will be the sell point but only time will tell. Its still early and I need to do a little more research before I make my final impression but my first impression is that I am not impressed.

112.9.2008 23:40
13thHouR
Inactive

Originally posted by LOCOENG:
The fine print

Quote:
"By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any content which you submit, post or display on or through, the services. This license is for the sole purpose of enabling Google to display, distribute and promote the services and may be revoked for certain services as defined in the additional terms of those services."

That's why you avoid it like the plague, the same as google mail and yahoo mail.

here is another great story: UK punters scowl at webmail ad targeting

Quote:
Two in five Brits are worried that free webmail comes at the expense of privacy because firms are scanning their messages in order to serve up targeted ads.


The reg has the best coverage yet of googls leap into targeted advertising using open source that was developed to avoid these types of....

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/09/02/..._comic_funnies/
Google's comic capers: what they really meant to say

Google publicised its new browser Chrome with a 38-page comic book. It's a gift to satirists, and already, our inboxes are buzzing with slightly less saintly interpretations.

Here's a selection. Naturally, the altruistic nature of the operation gets a bit of a bashing:












And this one revives the memory of an ancient diplomatic incident between the Empire of Goo and El Reg:








This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 02 Sep 2008 @ 23:47

123.9.2008 0:24

ha ha i love that cartoon. good find. i use yahoo mail for my account emails at various sites... but not for personal stuff.

why did you change your name to 13thhour?

133.9.2008 2:18

that is so funny. the sad thing is it is so true!

143.9.2008 8:46
atomicxl
Inactive

Funny cartoon. Google pretty much dominates every aspect of the net and is quickly approaching every aspect of your computer (office software, email, now even the browser) but everyone happily signs up and loves it.

MS decides to include a web browser with their OS (because nobody wants to browse the web right) and people are doing backflips about how MS wants to rule the world with an iron fist.

I don't like that every tab is its own process. Right now I have like 6 tabs open in my browser. Unless Chrome is way more efficient than how IE and FF handle tabs, it will destroy my system.

It will be interesting to see if google mail, office, life, etc start to have issues on other browsers but "Runs best on Chrome".

153.9.2008 9:03

Quote:
The fine print

Quote:
"By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any content which you submit, post or display on or through, the services. This license is for the sole purpose of enabling Google to display, distribute and promote the services and may be revoked for certain services as defined in the additional terms of those services."

'Nuff said.

163.9.2008 11:32

Wanna bet the release date of FF4 just got pushed up?
Competition is good, this will push the technology of the browser and make them all better. Firefox while good, can still learn some things from Chrome.

173.9.2008 11:57
varnull
Inactive

Google Chrome? "NEIN DANKE!"

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/09/03/google_chrome_eula_sucks/

Add to that the general distrust of a business which wants to "offer you a more engaging, relevant computing experience targeted to your interests and tastes" and hey presto.. instant spyware installed by you.

I've just given somebody who should know better a real good slap on another site for suggesting I may be a little paranoid when it comes to people keeping and using my browsing profile to "target" services and products at me by ip or logged details.. How do they know it's me if they aren't monitoring everything I'm doing.. and how do they know it's me when I'm using this browser if it isn't invading my privacy and sending identifying data somewhere?

screw that!

What the f can firefox learn from chrome?? How to spy on you and make money by selling that data?

Don't think we will see any popup or adblock plugins for this "browser" in the near future... if ever.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 03 Sep 2008 @ 11:59

183.9.2008 12:12
13thHouR
Inactive

@ varnull

you could use the HOSTS file until an ad-blocker is developed.

Here is a site that teaches you how:
http://www.mvps.org/winhelp2002/hosts.htm

but i fully agree with your post, this spyware crap browser is best avoided. why use it when we have firefox, developed to avoid the corporate data mining and privacy issues with other browsers.

more on the data mining malware offered by google can be found here: http://blog.wired.com/business/2008/09/chrome-eliminat.html

you should think that google will do the same as what microsoft did with their windows live eula and Rupert Murdoch's myspace eula crap.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 03 Sep 2008 @ 12:16

193.9.2008 12:15

All things considered, i'm more than happy with FireFox.

I have no intention of having Chrome on any of my pcs.



203.9.2008 13:30
isaacbomb
Inactive

peerguardian 2 for all your adblocking and ugly corporation blocking needs

it really is great i use it everyday

213.9.2008 16:37

its a beta.. they are trying to perfect it so they need some info to make sure it gets process correctly. nothing more =D

223.9.2008 16:45

Just checked it out. Unless you have a comic-book mentality, this is a gimmicky product from a company that has already lost its appeal with too many gimmicks for those of us who enjoy comic books but need something with more maturity.
It's no surprise that some people will like Google, since most people still use Internet Explorer.
Firefox is outstanding and technically more useful than any of the other browsers, not to mention the incredible level of customizable features one can add to it.
So I'll have to leave my comic books behind and will stick to the true innovator of useful features, Mozilla's Firefox.

If you want to join the millions who have switched to Firefox and begin to enjoy the ability to truly personalize your browser with cool (and useful) custom features, check it out.
http://www.mozilla.com/en-US/firefox/?from=getfirefox

For me, I find it's fun to go back and look at my comic books from time to time, but I like my big kids books better.

233.9.2008 17:16

Tried Chrome, decided to stay with FireFox, Linux that is. Even if chrome igrated to Mandriva, then I'll stay with FF. my 2 worth.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 03 Sep 2008 @ 17:16

243.9.2008 17:25

Who sees a google operating system in the near future :).

253.9.2008 17:26

Curious what they will be doing with all that private surfing and input of private information. I know they are "regulated", and I know that all of the browsers share some info in one form or another, but for the features they boast they must have to make a personal file on you somewhere... awhile back wasn't google charged or something for keeping tabs on browsing habits?..

263.9.2008 17:41

Hey, sorry this is a bit off topic but...

I'm using FF3 and it's fine but for some reason i can't seem to find any of the search add ons that were in FF2, i know you have the keyword searches in the address bar, but i quite like leaving the search box set to Google australia (from Australia), anyone know where they've gone?

273.9.2008 18:50

Ha ha haaa! NAS is gonna LOVE this. Makes their job easier. Just subpeona the info...or better yet, just hook in and give 'em Retro immunity from prosecution or civil liabilty! *poop*

283.9.2008 19:05

NSA! Just the thought destroyed my meager typing abilities! lol!

293.9.2008 19:22

some people might argue with me when i avoid google anything,
but those people are not ones to post on this particular site!

i'll leave the chrome alone and continue with firefox.
i get better and better at customizing it to meet the needs of me and my system all the time.
it also comes out of the gate working better than most any browser, at least for me.


Originally posted by magnets:
Hey, sorry this is a bit off topic but...

I'm using FF3 and it's fine but for some reason i can't seem to find any of the search add ons that were in FF2, i know you have the keyword searches in the address bar, but i quite like leaving the search box set to Google australia (from Australia), anyone know where they've gone?

i'm sorry too
heh




http://mycroft.mozdev.org/search-engines...oogle+australia
that's the list i got when i searched for...google australia searches.
=)

do what i do; add mozilla's mycroft project site to your search bar.
then you just choose it and type in a site's name to find search plugins.

http://mycroft.mozdev.org/search-engines...roft.mozdev.org
those are the plugins for mycroft project.

304.9.2008 4:58
wolfcraft
Inactive

Anyone surprised google feels these ways regarding your privacy?

Did not google turn over "a large indeterminable number" of cached IP addresses to Viacom concerning Youtube's copyright infringement?

People need to wake up and have some coffee, privacy and rights are a fable in todays age.

I beg you to spend an hour and 38 minutes watching "Privacy is Dead" from HOPE #6.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-383709537384528624

If one does something,it's seen by many.

314.9.2008 13:32

Right wolfcraft - watched it and even went to some of the other sites mentioned like http://www.pimall.com/nais/missingm.html.

What kind of world do we want to live in - a world where everyone can read about what you did when wrong when you were young and what your wife lyingly accused you of in divorce court? or a world where you have specific privacy rights?

It's up to all of us to demand laws that restrict the distribution of your private information (including testimony in Divorce Court), merely for the entertainment of the masses. with serious punishments for anyone who breaches these laws.
I don't suppose many of those who can't get enough of "Reality" tv shows will be in a rush to support my suggestion, but the rest of us can demand that personal information (including criminal records) will be only available on a need-to-know basis or with our express persmission.

Don't elect politicians unless they really mean it when they say they're gonna protect your privacy.
Otherwise, the loons will have CCTV cameras pointing at your house to make sure you're not smoking.

324.9.2008 14:40

What makes you think you are even remotely private or secure using FF or IE?
I'm not a fan of Google controlling everything either, but I think it is much wiser to worry about protecting myself with my own tools than to hope my government protects me.
Eventually Chrome will have tools built for it which will protect your privacy to some extant and then it will be just like FF or IE.
Google is not the enemy.

That being said, they need to be watched.... carefully.

334.9.2008 15:19
G_Hubcap
Inactive

I'm digging all the opinions of the 'Varsity' Afterdawn users, I do have 1 question. What site do you perform all your searches from, more than likely Google, right? If not what do you recommend for privacy purposes...

344.9.2008 16:44
13thHouR
Inactive

Originally posted by G_Hubcap:
I'm digging all the opinions of the 'Varsity' Afterdawn users, I do have 1 question. What site do you perform all your searches from, more than likely Google, right? If not what do you recommend for privacy purposes...
try asking!


Quote:

http://www.irconnect.com/ask/pages/news_releases.html?d=123324

Ask.com to Give People Unmatched Privacy Control

With AskEraser, people can ensure that their search history will not be retained by Ask.com. Searchers will have easy access to AskEraser and can change their privacy preference at any time. Once selected, searchers' privacy settings will be clearly indicated on search results pages so they always know the privacy status of their searches.
Quote:

http://blog.wired.com/monkeybites/2007/07/unlike-google-a.html

Unlike Google, Ask.com To Offer Real Privacy Controls

Ask.com has announced it will release a new privacy tool, AskEraser, which will allow users to stop Ask from storing any information at all about user searches. With Google under fire for its meaningless cookie policy change, Ask has stepped forward to give searchers a reason to move away from the Googlopoly.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 04 Sep 2008 @ 16:50

354.9.2008 16:52
G_Hubcap
Inactive

Quote:

try asking!

Thanks mon,
Good information!

364.9.2008 18:02

Originally posted by ThePastor:
What makes you think you are even remotely private or secure using FF or IE?
I'm not a fan of Google controlling everything either, but I think it is much wiser to worry about protecting myself with my own tools than to hope my government protects me.
Eventually Chrome will have tools built for it which will protect your privacy to some extant and then it will be just like FF or IE.
Google is not the enemy.

That being said, they need to be watched.... carefully.
Google specifically tells you in your agreement that anything you do is theirs. They don't even try to hide it.
Quote:
By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any content which you submit, post or display on or through, the services. This license is for the sole purpose of enabling Google to display, distribute and promote the services and may be revoked for certain services as defined in the additional terms of those services.
That is just a small section of it. "You write it, we own it."

374.9.2008 19:11

Originally posted by G_Hubcap:
I'm digging all the opinions of the 'Varsity' Afterdawn users, I do have 1 question. What site do you perform all your searches from, more than likely Google, right? If not what do you recommend for privacy purposes...
Anyone who is interested in browser security should read this page -
http://ixquick.com/eng/protect_privacy.html

Get it - http://ixquick.com/


384.9.2008 19:12

Uh. Just a heads up for anyone who reads this far down the page but..

Quote:
Google's Rebecca Ward, Senior Product Counsel for Google Chrome, now tells Ars Technica that the company tries to reuse these licenses as much as possible, "in order to keep things simple for our users." Ward admits that sometimes "this means that the legal terms for a specific product may include terms that don't apply well to the use of that product" and says that Google is "working quickly to remove language from Section 11 of the current Google Chrome terms of service. This change will apply retroactively to all users who have downloaded Google Chrome."
Apparently they merely copied their Eula from one of their existing services with the intent to "fix" it later. Arstechnica even said..

Quote:
Here at Ars, our first thought on reading the EULA was that it looks a whole lot like the EULAs Google uses for other services, with the "content license" provision being an obvious example of this. In fact, that's basically what it was.
Not that they could have really enforced that entry in the Eula anyway..

Quote:
It's worth noting that the EULA is largely unenforceable because the source code of Chrome is distributed under an open license. Users could simply download the source code, compile it themselves, and use it without having to agree to Google's EULA. The terms of the BSD license under which the source code is distributed are highly permissive and impose virtually no conditions or requirements on end users.
The links.
http://tapthehive.com/discuss/This_Post_...le_s_EULA_Sucks
http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/200...-change-it.html

The Eula was updated, as shown in the tapthehive link, and shows that the entry was completely removed.

394.9.2008 23:47

Many still don't know that Mozilla feels user security is very important (just check out their browser Firefox and their email client Thunderbird).
On the other hand, Google feels their group's needs trump their users needs (sound familiar?), and has a record of blatant disregard for their users' security that even surpasses the horrors of AOL.

It wouldn't hurt to mention, and it shouldn't be surprising, that this company that cares little about your security, uses the profit you give them, to finance political activities that have nothing to do with computing and that the majority of us are opposed to.

Keeping it strictly about loony people who don't care about your privacy, I'll remind you of this great page of information and add two others that I found to be excellent.
In the meantime, I'll stay away from anything with the word 'Google' in it, and go with those who do care about my privacy and yours.

Anyone who is interested in browser security should read this page -

http://ixquick.com/eng/protect_privacy.html

On Google privacy -
http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/200...chnologysection

On whether or not you should stop using Google -
http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/200...ysection.google

405.9.2008 6:36

Meh, not impressed, maybe it's TOO minimal, i've been seriously impressed by the Flock browser, now THAT's worth a look

416.9.2008 7:14

I feel that this has promise however i feel that it is too early for any big statments being made. I heard a rumor if Google is successful with their browser then they will bring out a Operating System. now that is something i want to see.

427.9.2008 16:57
Tomcito
Inactive

I've been using FF before version 1.4 was released. Since then, I've never browse the web in "raw" mode.

I've installed Chrome and the browsing was fast and stable. I am impressed.
But having to watch again all the stuff I've deleted with Adblock and Flashblock was an important drawback.
I'll wait until somebody develops some kind of adblock and flashblock and then I will try it again.
This browser will compete with FF, IE explorer users are too dumb to give it a try

437.9.2008 19:32

WHAT makes anyone think Google will allow add-ons that block ANY ads...that's their business! lol!
I reverted to FF2 when I discovered FF3 did not allow Flashblock to operate. Hopefully it will, if it already hasn't. I'm TIRED of ads taking all my CPU with crap ads I never look at..there IS such a thing as bad publicity! Does anyone REALLY click on ads at a site??

447.9.2008 19:44

I use Opera for browser and Thunderbird for email. Tried Chrome and while it is interesting and fun to use I missed the form filler feature and it had some issues displaying my home pages correctly. So will wait for them to enhance it and work out more of the bugs before trying again. BTW when I have problems with a web site using Opera I submit a bug report and then turn to Firefox. Eventually Opera fixes the problem.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 07 Sep 2008 @ 19:45

457.9.2008 20:16

The very features you mentioned are the ones I often try to avoid in a browser. I just don't like them. The only redeeming feature would be non-crash but after all, I have little problems with Firefox and a crash is not always that bad.

468.9.2008 4:01

Just as a side note, and I have become quite suspicious of Google lately, they are responsible for major financing of Firefox. They are in fact across the street from one another and often share their cafeterias. This is something one of their executives mentioned in a news report on their potential competition/rivalry.

I personally believe they are after Microsoft- I mean that's where the money is. Their own browser is a way of rebranding with their own name rather than pushing FF. An operating system of their own would be a long way off imo. Because Linux is, in theory, a fine alternative anyway and it's not widely accepted in the home, so their branding would be paramount in this. Perhaps they'll take MS to court.

My suspicions of Google revolve around their (and others) collusion with the Chinese goverment and their excuses for doing so.

478.9.2008 4:12

I dont know if this has been said as i haven't read all the comments, but the thumbnail thing when opening new tabs in google chrome is already an add-on for firefox that does the exact same thing, i have it on my firefox at home, so nothing new.

488.9.2008 12:07

I am an ask.com lady myself. this site is so informative. I never really used google and haven't heard of firefox, but from the discussions on this page I don't want to use either of them thanks for the info.

498.9.2008 21:07

Bsincere, Firefox 2+ is imo a fantastic browser- with its selection of addons, arguably the best- and the Google search engine is very very good. No problems using those.

And AfterDawn is, of course, an excellent site. :D

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 08 Sep 2008 @ 21:08

509.9.2008 21:57

Chrome is nice its fast, ok you have to make sure you have the relivant plugins installed in IE to make them work in chrome, but whooow im impressed.

Installed IE8 on the same day, not so impressed.

5115.9.2008 23:41

whoever wrote this article seemed genuinely impressed by the "thumbnail" bookmarks that opera has had for years...haha

Comments have been disabled for this article.

News archive