September 14, 2008

Google's Chrome Browser

David Pogue recently published a great overview of Chrome, the new open-source web browser from Google. As Pogue describes, many of Chromes features are neither new nor innovative--the same features have been provided by Safari, Firefox and Opera browsers. But that doesn't detract from the value or potential of Chrome. To the contrary, Google has brought together some of the best featues of other browsers AND expanded upon them with better security, performance, and some truly innovative and exciting new features. 

One of my favorite features is forehead-slapping simple--"create application shortcuts". This creates shortcut icons on the desktop, start menu or quick-launch bar of Windows for the current site. But these shortcuts don't just open a browser window. Rather, they open in a seemingly "browserless" window that makes web-based apps and Web 2.0 services look and feel more like traditional desktop-based software. Do this for sites like Picnik and Gliffy, along with Google apps like gmail, docs, calendar, sites, reader, iGoogle, Blogger, etc., and you've basically got a fully-functional computer that, as long as you have an internet connection, requires no other software than an operating system and Chrome

While I suspect only early-adopters and keen web developers have begun using it so far, I predict that future releases and word of mouth will garner Chrome a marketshare that rivals or suprasses Firefox and other popular browsers. I can't wait for the Mac and Linux versions of Chrome to be released soon. 

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