Chrome's Not All That Shiny

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Google's new Chrome Web browser is getting a lot of press. (Not that anyone's surprised. It is Google, after all.) IT Business Edge VP Ken-Hardin is among those who are pretty impressed. When Safari for Windows debuted, he said "all Web browsers are essentially the same, with the important exception of security." Chrome is making him take that statement back.


Not that Chrome doesn't have its problems, of course. What beta release doesn't? (For instance, there's the news that the new browser is subject to a carpet-bomb flaw.) But Ken particularly likes the fact that Chrome allows him to search his own browsing history. He notes:

I am frustratingly in love ...with Chrome's ability to search a complete index of pages I've visited, not just the meta page headers and URLs. Literally, this feature would have saved me 15 minutes and a bunch of under-the-breath cursing just yesterday.


It's the best thing since bookmarks, even with the understandable privacy concerns that surface any time a piece of software collects a lot of data about user behavior...

But there's also the plethora of bloggers who have tried it out only to find it wanting. Profy.com's Svetlana Gladkova says she managed to completely crash it in a matter of hours. ZDNet's Larry Dignan admits it's "snazzy," but he won't be switching to Chrome as a primary browser any time soon. He says it can't handle the streaming market data he watches and the Sirius radio he listens to on a daily basis. (To Chrome's credit, it did handle the conference calls Dignan tried.)


What's more, that's not even counting the disappointed open sourcers. CNET blogger Matt Asay says Google needs a community before Chrome can be an IE killer, and it doesn't have one. And the 451 Group's Jay Lyman finds it incredible a browser that is built on open source doesn't run on Linux.


The good news is, it's an early release. Maybe the next iteration will be an improvement.