Why I'm Switching Back from Chrome to Safari 5.0

Chrome was great. It was Safari, with a little more speed, better tabs, and a cool status bar that would only show when it needed to.

But I'm switching back, for the following reasons:

  1. Safari 5.0 is just as fast as Chrome.
  2. Safari's tab system is nicer looking than Chrome. Not a biggie.
  3. Safari can read PDFs without opening up an external application, and without downloading it to your Downloads folder. I hate having to clear out my Downloads folder every day after inadvertently clicking on PDF links (who uses PDFs anyways? ;-).
  4. When you right-click on an element in Safari (anywhere on the page), and click 'Inspect Element,' it works correctly. In Chrome, if you do this to an element under where the Inspector shows, the inspector shows an overview of the html structure...
  5. Safari allows you to set a default page for new windows/tabs/etc. Chrome requires an extension to do the same, and it doesn't work as well.
  6. Safari has Reader. Awesome. Instant Instapaper.
  7. Safari's recent page gallery view is much nicer than Chrome's recent pages view.
  8. Safari lets you drag URLs straight from the URL bar to the desktop (or any app that supports files being dragged to it), creating a link file. Chrome doesn't.
  9. Safari has a built-in RSS reader that beats the heck out of any Chrome RSS extension.
  10. Safari is a Mac OS X first-class application. Chrome is always lagging on the Mac platform, behind its Windows counterpart.

The only ridiculously awesome thing Chrome has that Safari doesn't is the ability to search straight from the 'magic bar' or whatever Google calls it. Keywurl used to support this, but I'm not sure if it works with Safari 5... maybe there's an extension I can use somewhere. Nevermind. Keywurl works great with Safari 5, as long as you follow these directions for editing Keywurl's info.plist file.

Another minor quibble is that Safari can crash altogether due to one page crashing... Chrome opens a new process for each tab, which is a nice feature.

I'll still use Chrome as my 'anonymous user' browser, but Safari takes the cake for beauty and efficiency. For now.

(Some might ask why I don't use FireFox... I say it's way too slow for anything except, ironically, YSlow).


The deal-breaker for me with Chrome was its inability to handle PDFs inline. Sure, you could install the extension that tries to open them in Google Docs, but a good percentage of the time Google Docs can't open the PDF. Unacceptable.

I forgot to mention: that's my number two reason. I hate having to download PDFs to read them, and I also hate (in Windows) having Adobe Reader load to read them. In Safari, it's instant.

I made the switch back to Safari after 5.0 came out. I liked Chrome and it's so called awesome bar, but Safari 5 is pretty much just as fast. I love the Reader function which is better than the bookmarklet Readability I use to use since it brings in multiple pages. I had been using Chrome since before it came out of Beta, but haven't loaded it up again since Safari 5.0. Plus while Chrome had some minimum 1Password support, 1Password in Safari is just plain awesome. I liked recent page gallery since it came out in version 4.0 and I still find it useful to go to those couple of pages I don't or can't use RSS on.

Firefox is so yesterday. Use to be my goto browser, but it is so slow in comparison now. I only run it when I need to use one plugin.

Jeff, one feature I always miss in Firefox is an extension that allows me to "copy as plain text" - is there something like that for safari?

I wish to heaven I could figure out my problem with Safari 5. I've done the opposite...I now use Chrome more often. Safari 5 is giving me some compatibility problem with Adobe products (Acrobat, Reader, Shockwave). Any time I try to open such a file, I get a loopy message that says, "Safari can't open "[whatever the URL is]" because Mac OS X doesn't recognize Internet addresses starting with "http:". I've spent hours on the phone with both AppleCare and Adobe. They each blame the other, of course. :-)

Quite odd - I haven't heard of this problem before, but I would imagine it might have to do with a problematic installation of either Adobe Reader (I've had problems with it before), or the Shockwave plugin.