Everyone has favourites. From cars to candy, everyone has their opinions, and those opinions can be rooted in a lifetime of preference and bias. Naturally, most people also have a favourite internet browser, and this preference is typically rooted in habit. I, personally, tend to use Google Chrome since it was introduced to me a few years ago, but since the introduction of Internet Explorer 9 and the amount of advertising Microsoft put behind it, I’ve been thinking about whether Chrome really is the best browser. So I have put the “big three” Windows 7 browsers up against each other to see which one is actually the best, with a series of objective tests that measure the browsers’ speeds at various tasks.
For the comparison, I will be using Chrome 23, Firefox 16, and Internet Explorer 9. All of the tests run were done on fresh installs of each browser, with no add-ons or previous use.
The page load times were a surprising benchmark, with Internet Explorer leading by a considerable margin. Internet Explorer did exceptionally well when loading large pages in particular, but was relatively close to Firefox and Chrome when loading smaller pages.
The HTML 5 scores were close for Firefox and Chrome, but last place Internet Explorer didn’t do too bad either.
The Flash benchmark has quite the spread. Internet Explorer beats Firefox handily, and Firefox beats Chrome handily.
Overall, we have Internet Explorer with 2 first place finishes, a second place, and a last place. Firefox comes up with a first, 2 seconds, and a last. Chrome finishes with a first, a second, and two lasts. If you take the magnitude of the placement of the browsers into account, we can get some percentage grades to sum up the final speeds of each browser:
Internet Explorer: 98.1%
Google Chrome: 91.5%
Mozilla Firefox: 90.4%
Microsoft wasn’t kidding when they said their browser was faster than ever.
With Internet Explorer winning the benchmarks, and with its sleek new look, you can definitely see that Microsoft cares about winning the browser market back from the other two. I’d definitely suggest at least trying out IE9 if you haven’t already, it really is a step up from the bad browsers you may remember from Microsoft’s earlier years.
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