If you're not worried by the privacy concerns associated with Google, this is the best web browser on the market.
Lots and lots of tweaking options
Beta builds available
Privacy concerns thanks to Google links
Very memory hungry
Not the fastest performer out there
If you’re fully immersed in the Google ecosystem, using Chrome makes perfect sense. It ties in with your Google account, allowing you to sync settings and bookmarks between computers – and even different devices thanks to mobile versions of the browser. Available for Mac, Windows and Linux, as well as iOS and Android, Chrome's cross-platform support gives it access to a large number of users, and it's little wonder that it proves so enduringly popular.
The current version of Chrome complies with more web standards than any other browser, and a frequent update cycle means that security issues and other bugs are knocked on the head quickly.
If you find that there's a feature missing from Chrome, or you like the idea of adding extra functions to websites you use frequently, you have the option of using extensions to do just that, and there's a huge selection available in the Chrome Web Store. If you like the idea of trying new tools first, there’s also a beta channel available that provides early access to new builds of the browser.
Chrome also does a superb job of managing tabs. As well as intelligently resizing tabs – and providing a pinning option for easy access – the browser also stores individual tabs in memory separately, so if one crashes, it shouldn't take the rest with it.
In terms of its basic look, Chrome offers few surprises. This is, after all, a piece of software designed to display web pages, and those web pages should be the focus of things rather than the browser itself. With this in mind, Chrome does a great job of fading into the background – it is beautifully minimalist.
There are few settings that you will need to concern yourself with on a day-to-day basis, but it's easy to change the default search engine, show or hide the bookmarks toolbar, and control the storage of browsing history and cookies. With support for multiple users, and even parental controls, Chrome is a browser for all the family, and the browser of the future.
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