- Internet & the Web
Chrome, Firefox or Explorer?
Pick the browser that works for you
For years I have read the feedback on which is the best browser to use and I have found that the simplest answer is the one that works best for you. It doesn’t mean you can’t use more than one. I have all three of the major browsers running on my new computer in Windows 8. At the time of writing this hub, these were the most current versions.
- Google Chrome, Version 27.0
- Mozilla Firefox, Version 22.0
- Internet Explorer, Version 10.0
A pattern began to appear in how advanced each browser was and the value of the version number provided a clue as to that development.
On my last computer which was a laptop, I ran Chrome because it just seemed to work best for me. I also upgraded to a 23” LED monitor so my eyes wouldn’t explode trying to read mice-print on the laptop screen even though it was the larger format. Personally, I don’t like laptops. The keys are not suitable for long periods of typing and the touchpad and mouse buttons just get sticky over time. I added a Logitech keyboard to use with my fat fingers. I still make a lot of typos but the ergonomics of the keyboard are much more to my liking.
It was quite obvious that Chrome and Firefox were indeed faster than Explorer. The best indicator was an online game I play called anno. There is an awful lot going on graphically in this game but the best indicator was the little characters that walked on the roads you created. You could see no interruption in Chrome and Firefox but that wasn’t the case in Explorer. The little characters would walk for a distance, stop, and then resume their movement. This was just proof that there was a definite lag in the screen redrawing process in Explorer.
Ease of Reading
The game was another thing that guided me in my own personal choice. I am older so I am finding reading material on computer screens is getting more difficult as the overall resolution improves. Windows 8 runs in a higher resolution than my Samsung monitor wants, but there seems to be no way to get it to load in the recommended resolution (which is greyed out in Control Panel).
This means that both Firefox and Chrome have smaller menus in the game with almost unreadable numbers in those boxes. So I ran the game for a while in Explorer and it was easier to read but you had a lot of overlap of menus.
And then I remembered that Chrome had a switchable setting between Windows 8 and the Desktop (which looks like Windows 7 to me) and lo and behold the Chrome version on the Desktop looked pretty much the same as Explorer with similar lag. Is Explorer 10 actually running in Windows 7? I’m not qualified to answer that but it does look like it to me. Shame on you Microsoft!
I am going back to Chrome and run the game in Desktop mode and do all the other stuff in Windows 8 format. Neither Firefox nor Explorer provides this option.
There seemed to be a consistency here in that you could you could enlarge or shrink the viewing window of any webpage with the keyboard but the speed buttons on the left side of my keyboard didn’t always work. I find the keyboard strokes are the best way to get the page into a viewing size that works for me. They are the following if you don’t already know this.
Enlarge Ctrl and + keys (plus) depressed together
Shrink Ctrl and – keys (minus) depressed together
Reset to normal Ctrl and 0 keys (zero) depressed together
You can use either the + and – keys on the top row or on the number pad since they both work. Sometimes the keystroke method is easier to use than the mouse click method such as Copy (Ctrl and C) and Paste (Ctrl and V).
The fact that the overall worldwide acceptance of browsers is in the same order as listed above and the value of the major development numbers of each are in that same relationship doesn’t seem to be just a coincidence to me. Google rewrote Chrome 27 times (27 major upgrades) and it seems to show in the performance, overall menu options and customization options that the user can perform.
When I had to use Microsoft Customer Support to help get rid of some spyware, it was interesting to me that they didn’t try to sell me on using Explorer. They did try to get me to consider using Defender instead of Norton since it was included with Windows 8 and wouldn’t require an annual subscription payment. I will investigate that.
I am not an expert, just a daily user of PC’s and I have come to the conclusion that Google Chrome is the browser that works best for me. This may help you to decide but you make your own decision. It is your computer and you should set it up in a way that works best for you.