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Apr 12, 2001
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Google's Chrome browser has been criticized for years for being a system resource hog, but Chromium developers are making some loud claims about how much smarter the latest version is at using and freeing up memory on macOS.

According to a new post on Google's Chromium blog, Chrome developers recently managed to shrink the memory footprint of background tabs on Mac by up to 8%, or just over 1GB on some systems in version 89 of the browser.

Tab Throttling, which acts on pages that are not currently active, is also said to have led to significant improvements by reducing JavaScript Timer wake-ups. Background tabs no longer wake up the CPU as often and preserve battery life, and as a result, Chrome uses up to 5x less CPU, while battery life is up to 1.25 hours better, says Google.

According to the developers, since its introduction in Chrome 87 and wider rollout in Chrome 88, the feature has been responsible for a 65% improvement on Chrome's Apple Energy Impact score for pages in the background.

The highlighted improvements are in stark contrast to recently reported independent measurements which claimed to demonstrate that Google Chrome uses 10x more RAM than Safari on macOS Big Sur.

The interpretation of those measurements has since been contested, but separately Apple still claims that Safari on ‌macOS Big Sur‌ is "50% faster on average at loading frequently visited websites than Chrome." Apple also says Safari can stream video for up to one and a half hours longer, and can keep users browsing normally on a single charge for up to one hour longer, compared to Chrome and Firefox.

Google Chrome for Mac is a free download available directly from Google's servers. Google Chrome for iOS is a free download for iPhone and iPad available on the App Store. [Direct Link]

Article Link: Google Touts Chrome 89 Memory Savings That 'Keep Your Mac Cooler' While Browsing
 
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Schranke

macrumors 6502a
Apr 3, 2010
973
1,055
Copenhagen, Denmark
A little sad that they need to emphasis that its now able to save memory space. should have been lightweight all along.

Will stick to safari as my daily browser and Firefox as my 2nd option. No amount of work put into this by google will change that by now, and I also trust apple a little more in regards to privacy so...
 

DjiMac

macrumors newbie
Nov 7, 2020
4
8
After years of using Chrome on my 2013 iMac I was getting more and more frustrated with how much ram this program uses, screen freezes and Mac spinning wheel of death I moved everything over to Safari. I like the Chrome UI better but would rather have a more stable browser. The Safari UI took some getting used to but I'm getting there.
 

mazz0

macrumors 68030
Mar 23, 2011
2,857
2,807
Leeds, UK
The highlighted improvements are in stark contrast to recent independent tests which claimed to demonstrate that Google Chrome uses 10x more RAM than Safari on macOS Big Sur.

While the independent measurements have been contested
I don't think your little concession to that claim being "contested" is sufficient there. The report was disregarding almost all of Safari's memory footprint (that was handled by processes not named Safari). That doesn't make it just somewhat questionable, it makes it complete bollocks.
 

crevalic

Suspended
May 17, 2011
83
97
Wow, Macrumors.

Still perpetuating the completely debunked "safari uses 10% of RAM" finding from a single test by a guy who didn't understand how to correctly check for memory use?
Even misquoting by saying it was "tests" not a single false report that was completely disproven and should have been removed from this website? And then daring to call the findings "contested". They are not contested, they are false

Disgusting and embarrassing.

You are perpetuating misinformation.
 

horsebattery

macrumors 6502
Sep 24, 2013
312
424
I don't think your little concession to that claim being "contested" is sufficient there. The report was disregarding almost all of Safari's memory footprint (that was handled by processes not named Safari). That doesn't make it just somewhat questionable, it makes it complete bollocks.
That original article has also yet to be taken down or updated either, outside of tacking on “Updated” to the headline and also adding similar weasel words at the end noting that the results are sketchy.

The first article was embarrassing. To repeat that here is just downright spreading misinformation.
 

chris1958

macrumors member
Jan 9, 2018
77
62
The developers of Chrome have every reason to be proud. On the list of processes, which consume a significant amount of energy, Chrome has completely disappeared. And the claims of Safari consuming significant less memory are probably based on a misunderstanding. Beside the main process of Safari there is a web store. Some years ago this used to eat up all memory and never return it. While this bug is fixed now, it still consumes a lot of memory.
 

TheSynchronizer

macrumors 6502
Dec 2, 2014
266
471
I don’t like chrome at all, but I have switched from Safari to Edge and I’ve found that it does indeed use less memory, which is great on my M1 Macbook Pro as Safari was one of the culprits of excessive swap writing due to the way it caches every website.

Seems like a lot of people are prejudiced, but why are you judging their claims on no basis other than much older versions of chromium, without testing and seeing for yourself?
 

sw1tcher

macrumors 68020
Jan 6, 2004
2,493
4,947
According to a new post on Google's Chromium blog, Chrome developers recently managed to shrink the memory footprint of background tabs on Mac by up to 8%, or just over 1GB on some systems in version 89 of the browser.

Alternative headline: "Google Touts Chrome 89 Now More Efficient At Spying On And Monitoring You While Browsing"
 

ksec

macrumors 68000
Dec 23, 2015
1,856
2,001
Just tested this out, to my surprise Chrome is acting more like when it first launched, quick and snappy. Very responsive. Compared to Safari which is getting a little janky at times especially after Safari 14.

But Chrome still doesn't support Tab Overflow.
 

Nordichund

macrumors 6502
Aug 21, 2007
484
239
Oslo, Norway
Chrome is great for reading my Gmail account and for searching Google when Duck-duck go is not so productive in Safari. I also use it to load some sites that don't load as they should in Safari. My Google profile is very boring :)
 

telo123

macrumors regular
Mar 11, 2021
152
146
Chrome on Apple silicon (ie M1) has been extremely pleasing. I find that it is no longer resource intensive. Whoever touts ChomeisBad as reputable is misguided. Also using the VP9 decoding experimental flag for better YouTube 4K streaming is also great for the battery.

The way that Safari caches every single website causes for excessive writes and SWAP memory to be used. Like for example, why is 1 to 2 GB of SWAP already being used when there is nothing else open and plenty of RAM still available? Ive never seen Safari behave like this on Intel, but on M1 Chips, it is behaving aggressively on SWAP memory use. Using Chrome, no SWAP or very little when viewing the same websites. One can empty cache whenever they want but why should I have to? Chrome or Edge manage RAM very well now.

Battery Life on my M1 MBA on either browser feels the same.
 
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