MacBook Newbie Question: Safari or Chrome?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by GoingDark, Nov 18, 2013.

  1. GoingDark macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2013
    #1
    So I just received my first Apple laptop ever (13" rMBP 2.4/8GB/256GB) and I'm super excited. Coming from decades of Windows use, it's like learning to use a computer all over again. :D

    I always used Chrome on Windows, and I have an Android phone so I make use of things like tab/bookmark syncing across devices. However, I keep hearing that Chrome on Mac is a resource hog and from a few hours of use, I've found a couple of things to like about Safari (pinch-zoom works more smoothly than in Chrome, for example).

    What do long-time Mac veterans like yourselves use on a day-to-day basis? What are the pros and cons of each browser? What would you recommend I use going forward and why?
     
  2. Beezy253 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2013
    Location:
    Tacoma, WA
    #2
    I prefer Safari/Firefox.

    The only time I use Chrome is to print off my USPS shipping labels, or if I can't get something to load in Safari.

    I've heard Chrome isn't optimized for OSX, and sucks the life out of your battery, but I don't use it enough, so not sure how bad it really is.

    Congrats on the Mac.. Once you go Mac, you never go back….lol
     
  3. john123 macrumors 68000

    john123

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2001
    #3
    Beezy is right. Chrome is fast and better at certain things, but it is a power/battery hog. For everyday use, Safari is your best bet.

    I'll note that the "winner" seems to change on a quasi-regular basis, so don't be surprised if Chrome leaps back in front at some point. Firefox, I'm sorry to say, seems dead.
     
  4. Scott7975 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2013
    #4
    I am also a Mac newbie. I started with Chrome because it seem to be an easier transition. I'm one of a few that actually like IE. The other browsers probably have better functionality, but I like the Internet Explorers UI better. I started using Safari little by little and now I like it better. Safari is what I use more often then not. There are still a couple websites that I need for college that aren't supported for Safari. Other then that I use Safari.
     
  5. PhilPilsner macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2013
    #5
    13'' rMBP 2.6/8/256

    I've tried so many times to switch to safari for my main browser but every time I do, it lacks in some way or another... It could be some website not loading correctly or some terrible lagging when it comes to loading webpages (especially the homepage which is just google.com) and moving back and forth between web pages. Pinch-zooming is definitely smoother in safari (apple has that science down!).

    I use chrome 90% of the time it seems, but I am also usually plugged in.

    If I was traveling and I needed every ounce of battery I would use safari... but in the mean time, chrome is faster and rarely ever has compatibility issues with any websites. Only downside is I don't get the fancy animation safari has when swiping back and forth in webpages.
     
  6. PhilPilsner macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2013
    #6
    13'' 2.6/8/256

    I've tried so many times to switch to safari for my main browser but every time I do, it lacks in some way or another... It could be some website not loading correctly or some terrible lagging when it comes to loading webpages (especially the homepage) and moving back and forth between web pages.

    I use chrome 90% of the time it seems, but I am also usually plugged in.

    If I was traveling and I needed every ounce of battery I would use safari... but in the mean time, chrome is faster and rarely ever has compatibility issues with any websites. Only downside is I don't get the fancy animation safari has when swiping back and forth in webpages.
     
  7. dusk007 macrumors 68040

    dusk007

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2009
    #7
    If you are only on one display and use gfxCardStatus, Chrome isn't so bad on the battery. In some flash situation Safari is even less efficient. Safari is eats memory for breakfast noon and supper too.
    IMO all browser questions bear down to usability. If you don't need anything else because of features, always go for the native browser. Even in Windows IE is the most battery efficient. IMO Safari sucks in usability. It has some rather pointless shiny animation features but no real focus on real useful things and proper shortcuts. I think all they focus on is rather useless animations for novices and performance for benchmarks but I think the last time somebody really tried to clean up usability must have been years ago. I just could never deal with that browser.
    Anybody who picks their browser based on some benchmark review is a fool imo. Most browser on a modern notebook are too close to really matter. Bugs impact your actual felt performance far more than what these tests show. I.e Opera on Mac used to be quite buggy in 10-11 version. The newest is basically Chrome with less features. No real Opera.
     
  8. kwokaaron macrumors 6502a

    kwokaaron

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2013
    #8
    Safari. I've used chrome for quite a while but it just isn't optimised for retina displays like safari was. Chrome stutters quite a bit more on sites than safari. I'm guessing it doesn't utilise the GPU as well as safari does. Apart from that I think it uses consumes less power than chrome as well.
     
  9. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020

    KUguardgrl13

    Joined:
    May 16, 2013
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    #9
    Chrome and formerly Firefox. Even though Chrome is a resource hog (and is buggy on Mavericks), I like the UI and integration with my Google account. I also like keeping Safari on my iPhone separate with a different set of bookmarks. Chrome is also helpful if you have multiple computers and want your bookmarks to be on all of them. I can log into any PC on my college campus and have my bookmarks up as soon as I go through 2-step verification.
     
  10. scbond macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2010
    Location:
    Nottingham, UK
    #10
    All the different browsers have their pros and cons...just depends what you want to do with and do without. As others have said, Chrome works really well and effectively does more but uses more resources and power. Safari on the other hand is more clean and simple and uses less power. My advice would be try try both and see which you prefer.
     
  11. IndoX macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2011
    #11
    The only reason I ever used chrome was for the flash player (mainly youtube and other websites). However, with the extension clicktoplugin I can now view all my videos via HTML5 in safari - so I no longer use chrome.
     
  12. actuallyinaus macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2013
    #12
    chrome is great

    yes it's a ram hog but that's because of the design, each tab being its own process and all - but this is great when one tab crashes or freezes or something and we all have too much ram anyway (8gb is plenty)

    flash is going to be the main killer for battery, you can use the clicktoplay for flash (its one of the options in chrome) or you could install chromium and never use flash ever..
     
  13. red321red321 macrumors regular

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    Jun 3, 2013
    #13
    Chrome is better because it actually lets you choose where to save downloads.
     
  14. sonyisawesome macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2012
    #14
    This so much.
     
  15. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Location:
    Somewhere
    #15
    I've used both at different times and like them both. Right now I use Safari, my recommendation for you is to try using Safari for a bit, and then go back to Chrome and see which you like better after that. They both work well, and it's mostly your preference as to which one is best to use.
     
  16. Raris macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2010
    Location:
    California
    #16
    I was wondering the same thing! I got chrome, however I read that Safari has battery saving techniques...so now I am just going to use Safari.
     
  17. Rizzm macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2012
    #17
    Chrome. I can't stand the fact that on Safari the tabs don't have icons. I always have a dozen or more tabs open so I don't have time to be reading tabs all day.
     
  18. radiohead14 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2008
    Location:
    nyc
    #18
    chrome.. just the little things about it (like cross devices sync and chrome to phone).. makes for a bit more convenience. safari seems to use more memory also.
     
  19. Mirascael macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2008
    #19
    No love for Firefox?

    Does that mean there are adblock-addons for Chrome, Safari, Opera and IE that I am unaware of?
     
  20. hallux macrumors 68020

    hallux

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2012
    #20
    Chrome. I can't stand that when you're browsing forums or any other page in Safari, when you go back to the previous page that previous page gets refreshed. That refresh not only takes time but it sometimes clears the unread topics.
     
  21. desi1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2013
    Location:
    England
    #21
    I have an early 2011 13" MBP and used chrome on snow leopard a fair bit, as I came from windows and just stuck with what I knew. When I upgraded to mavericks, I tried safari and found it was blazing fast and the battery saving technologies, icloud keychain, etc worked great.

    However, things such as the appearance (much prefer the look of chrome), allowing to save downloads to a specific location, the automatic webpage language translation, in addition to the themes and extensions available made me come back to chrome.

    I still keep safari on my dock for when someone else wants to use my laptop.. if you know what I mean ;)
     
  22. AirThis macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2012
    #22
    On my rmbp Chrome is sometimes laggy, Safari is not. So that's why I use the latter.

    I don't really care about all the fancy plugins, so it's really an easy choice for me. The other issues which have been invoked in this thread are non-issues from my point of view. You can choose where to save Downloads in Safari (Preferences), and the fact that pages are reloaded when you go back to them in Safari is actually the behavior I expect and want. For me, the simplicity of Safari is actually one of it's biggest assets. I don't want or need tons of options.

    I guess I'm probably more tolerant than many here as I was a Netscape user back in the days of MacOS and got served daily bombs. In contrast, today most browsers work like a charm.
     
  23. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020

    KUguardgrl13

    Joined:
    May 16, 2013
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    #23
    Of course there's Adblock! I wouldn't have left Firefox without it, especially for Chrome! As far as I'm aware, it's on Chrome and Safari, but I don't know about IE. Adblock and IT dept rules were the major reasons I used Firefox over Safari in 2009, but those aren't a factor anymore. Adblock has saved me from the more recent frustrations with Facebook ;). Now if only it were available for mobile...
     
  24. ultra7k macrumors 6502

    ultra7k

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2012
    #24
    started out using Chrome, but ended up switching to Safari because it Chrome was a resource/battery hog. That being said, I use Chrome when I am at work, and Safari for all my Apple devices. I do have it as a back up in case something doesn't load properly in Safari (which is almost never).
     
  25. sarakn macrumors 6502a

    sarakn

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2013
    #25
    I'm 99% firefox and use chrome on that rare occasion when I need to either test on a different browser or log onto YT while working as my company is all google.
     

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