Mozilla’s newest browser, Firefox Quantum, might be better than Chrome
Mozilla’s latest browser — Firefox Quantum — is lightning fast, sleek, and ready to handle all six zillion of your tabs after almost two months in beta.
Nick Nguyen, Firefox’s vice president of product, told Mashable his biggest fear: Will the Internet full of Google Chrome-enthusiasts give it a chance?
“My biggest fear is that people won’t try it,” he said. “It’s like any release — you do this to make people’s lives better. If people aren’t using your product, you don’t have an opportunity to do that.”
And the folks at Firefox have big plans. Nguyen won’t rest until Quantum overtakes Google Chrome to become the average internet user’s primary browser. “Today, people use Firefox as their secondary browser,” he told Mashable. “We think it’s good enough to be your first browser.”
There’s only one way to find out. So come on, close Chrome for two seconds and give it a try.
This browser is really, really fast. In a test conducted with the open-source project WebPageTest, Firefox Quantum loaded a number of top websites before Chrome did, including Yelp, Shutterstock, Ask.com and even Google Search itself. (Chrome was still, of course, faster to load most Google and Youtube pages).
The browser also uses around 30% less memory than its competitors Chrome, Edge, and Safari on Windows operating systems, and only uses a tiny bit more than Chrome on macOS. This means you can run 30% more tabs without your browser crashing or slowing to a crawl.
But where the company hopes its browser will stand out the most is in the interface. The company extensively researched the way users navigate browsers, and Firefox Quantum has a number of small, but significant features to accommodate those patterns.
For example, according to Nguyen, users are a lot more impatient when waiting for the content of a page to load than they are for for graphics or sidebars. Consequently, Firefox Quantum loads the content of a website before loading any logos or graphics. It also loads your active tab before any other tabs — people overwhelmingly focus on one tab at a time.
Above all else, according to Nguyen, users want a browser that is fast and easy. “They want a browser that stays out of the way,” he said. “They don’t want to housekeep.”
Speed and ease have long been the categories where Google Chrome has taken the lead. But Firefox Quantum may soon be hot on its tail. Seriously, just try it.