So, google chrome has been released, and maybe you are not on a pc or you are not sure if you want to install it…

Here are some quick facts :

– startup time is blazing fast. On my old pc it starts in 1 or 2 seconds cold and almost instantly warm.

– the css rendering seems pretty solid (not so strange, it’s based on webkit)

– each process (even each tab) is isolated. This is great for security, and for stability. A crashing process won’t crash other window or tab.

– you can drag and drop tabs to reorder them or to separate/move a tab to another window.

– each process takes only 15-30 megs of ram. It means more memory consumption if you have a lot of tabs open, but it also means you can have a very slim browsing experience. In other words, you can really close tabs to reclaim memory for other tasks. See the picture below:

– Javascript support seems fast as well. I made some benchmarks, and I can say that google chrome javascript engine is 2 times faster than firefox 3.0.1

Click here for the complete benchmark result

As it supports google gmail, you can guess that it has a very complete javascript support. All the sites I visited are working. (even the funky wysiwyg editor of my blog)

– Flash is working

– You can create shortcuts on your desktop to web applications you use often, like gmail, google reader, etc… To do so, you click on the button to create an “application shortcut”, you choose where you want it (on your desktop, in your start menu…) and you are done. This is great for not so experienced people that don’t understand what is a web application.

Now the separation between the web and the desktop is even tinner.

What is also great is the fact that you can do this for any website (not only google applications). It will use the favicon of the website to create an icon on your desktop. The generated shortcut will open your website/application “chromeless” which means without an adress bar and all the stuff that gives headache to newbies. Great to setup email for grandma :

Instead of :

– Enter into the adress bar of your browser
– What is the adress bar again Billy ?
– …
– Oh, I typed something and now I’ve lost all my emails
– No grandma, you just typed your search terms into the adress bar
– What the f**** are you talking Billy ?
– Grandma ?

You can simply tell her :

– Click on the Gmail icon on your desktop to access your email”

Now the potential problems :

– Yet another browser to support. As much as they (google) can and will provide a great tool, there will most probably be special quirks and icks you’ll have to work around as a web developer

– Windows only for the moment but other plateforms will be there soon

– Google taking over the world is one step closer 🙂