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chrome future featuresI want to start out by saying, I LOVE Google Chrome. Recently I went away from Flock and made Chrome my primary browser. Going out and saying it’s the “best browser I’ve ever used” would be a bit much, but it’s definitely in the top teir. This article isn’t about how great Chrome is Google Chrome - A New Chapter in Browser History? Google Chrome - A New Chapter in Browser History? Read More , though. But mostly, about the features that need to be added to Chrome in the future.

A little while ago, Google announced the removal of the “Beta” tag from their brand new browser. Now, I have heard speculation that this is due to the fact that computer manufacturers won’t bundle software with “Beta” hanging around its neck. Normally Google applications stay in Beta for a very long time (see: Gmail), but after only a few months, Chrome is out in the wild with no reservations.  

While this may be more of a marketing stunt than anything else, a “Gold” version of Chrome (that’s ironic!) must now assume the same responsibilities of the other browsers that have taken off their training wheels. Note that in this list I’m excluding most (but not all) of the things Google has explicitly promised to fix. These are in NO particular order.

1.  More Extensive Options

To be honest, Chrome has fewer options than most of the freeware I review regularly. Essentially, Google has eliminated all but those options that are absolutely necessary, probably in order to see if any of the common options are actually unnecessary. Here are the areas I’d like to see enhanced or simply restored:

  • Allow users to set preferred media associations. In other words, restore the functionality of the “Applications” tab in Firefox options which allows the user to choose which plug-ins or programs handle certain types of media.
  • Add in options for better tab management (discussed later in this article).
  • Basic history controls (like how long to keep user history) would be nice. All the history controls have been made separate in the form of a “History Tab,” but it’s been oversimplified.

I will note that Chrome made it very easy for me to compare Firefox’s options to its own, because the Chrome options box does not disable use of the main browser window. Definitely a nice touch.

2. Compatability Mode

For a very long time, Firefox was plagued by websites that would only allow Internet Explorer (IE) usage. While this is still an issue, many secure or proprietary websites have begun to develop their sites so that they work with Firefox too.  

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Chrome is, in this sense, the new Firefox.  There are already a large number of users who are running Chrome as their primary browser (and more will follow if Google begins making deals to bundle it into new PCs), but there is no easy way to work around browser incompatability.

Firefox users fixed incompatability by emulating IE with an extension called [NO LONGER WORKS] IE Tab.  Essentually, IE Tab ran Internet Explorer inside of Firefox though a function called “Chrome” (no relation to the subject of today’s article, as far as I’m aware).  While this worked for almost every instance, it seems that a superior solution could be built into Chrome (the browser) itself.  

Why not give users the option to render the page using either their installed copies of IE or Firefox, in addition to Chrome?  For the less experienced users who choose Chrome for its simplicity, this will remove one more headache whenever they try to access arcanely designed websites.  This is the kind of thing my mom needs, even though she might not understand why.

3.  Please Fix Flash!

Seriously!  Flash is one of the most pervasive web components out there.  While several browsers seem to be having problems with Flash at the moment, my experience with Chrome has been the worst.  Separating the plug-in from the browser’s primary process is quite a blessing sometimes, but it also crashes all the time.  When Flash crashes on Chrome it kills all the Flash elements on every page.  It can be very aggravating to lose idle Flash games or buffering videos.

There are some proposed fixes out there, but most of them are of the “uninstall, reinstall” kind and none have worked for me so far.

4.  Better Tab Management

If you’re at all like me, you have no less than 15 tabs open at any one time.  This is because there are just so many gosh-darn cool things on the internet and tabs are a great way to store all the things you want to read later.  Unfortunately, keeping tabs open requires memory (especially if they have a lot of Flash or Java elements), so it’s terrible for your performance.  Chrome has done an excellent job of minimizing RAM leaks and separating each tab into its own process.  If one tab freezes, the others will survive.

My grievance with Chrome’s tabs is the layout.  While I love how the tabs ARE the the browser’s upper boundary, the interface breaks when too many tabs are open at once.  The above image was taken with only 17 tabs open.  If as many as 30 are opened simultaneously, the icons dissappear altogether and each tab is identical to the others.  A simple solution to this would be to allow some of the tabs to fall off the edge of the screen and be accessable through an arrow button or mouse scrolling (as is done with Firefox).  This might break Google’s aesthetic, but I’d be happier as a user.

5.  Extension Support

Google has promised in the already mentioned blog post that an extension platform is on its way.  Awesome.  I have just three requests for Google:

  • Call them “Extensions” – not Add-ons, Plug-ins, Widgets, or Tools.
  • Cater to the people who are already making high quality extensions for Firefox – make it easy for them to port their projects over to Chrome.
  • Take extensions to the next level.  Whether it’s a great developer pack or better integration with Google Docs, I feel like there is still new ground to plow in this field.

6.  Built-in RSS Support

Almost all browsers now offer some kind of auto-detection for a site’s RSS feeds.  Flock did the best job in my opinion.  For some reason, Chrome has NO features related to RSS.  

Image from Vox Daily

What needs to happen is for Chrome to “notice” whenever a site has a general RSS feed and notify the user, either with a distinct icon or a simple option to open that feed.  If they wanted to include Google Reader integration, I wouldn’t complain.

7.  Little Things and Beta Bugginess

Aside from these major topics, there are quite a few “little things” that have been bothering me in the last month or so.  Some of these are things I really liked about Flock/Firefox and wish they were also in Chrome.  Some are bothersome things that can be chalked up to the fact that this is still basically Beta software, no matter what Google calls it.

  • Switching from tab to tab has been slow for me.  Often the tab I switch to is blank for quite some time before the page loads (this is after the page has already loaded previously).
  • There is no “View image properties” option in the right-click contextual menu.  There is an “Inspect element” option, but it doesn’t really serve the same purpose as well.
  • An extension called CoLT allows you to choose between copying the text of a link, the location (or URL) of a link, or both in a specific format.  This is perfect for transporting inserting links into blogs, microblogs, and emails.  I’d love to see this added natively to Chrome.
  • I’d love to see spullsheck spellcheck built-in.
There are other little bugs that are slowly being worked out of Chrome, but it will clearly take some time for it to work as well and as consistantly as Firefox.  Even so, it’s impressive to see just how far Chrome has come in such a short time.  It will be interesting to see just how many of these issues Google decides to fix and what new concepts they will come up with.

Got Chrome gripes of your own? Post your own issues in the comments.

  1. Eric
    July 30, 2009 at 8:36 pm

    I love Chrome, I really do. It's a great browser and I'm using it right now, but there's one little bug that irritates me to no end. If I click another tab from the page I'm already on sometimes, it'll drag the tab out into it's own window even though I didn't drag the mouse at all. This keeps me from using Chrome all too much. As of now, all I use Chrome for is when Firefox feels like being lazy and keeps crashing.

  2. all politics aside
    July 12, 2009 at 11:15 pm

    Undo Close Tab definitely needed.

  3. John
    March 28, 2009 at 4:43 pm

    What I don't understand is why there isn't a 'properties' option when you right click an image. Often times, I'd like to check the dimensions of a certain image and I have to download the image and check it's properties through Windows ImageViewer. Also, if Chrome could have something like Firebug for Firefox, it would be awesome. Right now the inspect element is ok but it's no Firebug. One last thing, there seems to be a bug when I type in text boxes. For instance, when I type something and backspace it, some of the letters still remain. It's weird and I don't know a better way to explain it.

  4. ABBA
    February 19, 2009 at 11:50 pm

    Chrome is good to browse google sites. LOL :)

  5. Tom
    January 16, 2009 at 8:03 pm

    What about those of us who like to send links of the page we are viewing ? Right click .. send link would be nice. I copied a send link script into my browser bar and yes I know I can copy/paste links, but I like the ease with which other (FF) browsers do it. How fricking hard could it be

  6. Zord
    January 15, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    Jimmy, I support you in the tabs issue very strongly. Viewing all those comments on tabs made me disappointed and a bit angry at those who says that they can't believe anyone have more than 5 or 8 tabs open. I am a blogger but when I blog, I don't open so many tabs. Relax Jimmy, I'm on your side. But people!! Seriously, try asking yourself how long you will be browsing Internet? As a heavy user of the Internet, I know what Jimmy is facing. Being a manga reader (Japanese comic), surfing through my emails(which accumulates like 1000+ in a month, blame it on me), downloading things from *cough* illegitimate website, makes my tabs flooded. Not everyday I face with this problem, but when it does, go figure. The recent was when I was downloading songs. I just middle clicked happily until I realize that my other tabs is no longer visible. Tab management is important. And for those who couldn't understand why is he having this problem, don't ask until you are reading the news, reading your friends blog, writing your blog, doing your research on something, checking your email, finding torrents, reading torrent comments, Facebooking and finding the updates on some movie you want to watch. Then, screw Jimmy by telling him to open new window or stuff. Trust me, I think when you are opening tabs using the middle button, you just don't bother opening up new window. And I like the vertical tab idea, and here is another suggestion, having two bars of tabs. And hey Jimmy, if you are the type that opens up a lot of link from one website, try dragging the tab out and then clicking freely. It works like a charm. Try getting used to it, it will make your surfing easier. :-) Finally, if I have angered anyone by my comment, sorry but I was just voicing, or more better, typing my opinion.

    • Jimmy Rogers
      January 15, 2009 at 4:50 pm

      Hey Zord...

      first off...the return key is your friend!

      anyway, thanks for the lengthy response. I'm fully aware of "how to make a new tab into a window," but there is a good reason I don't do it. If you have everything in one window and you close that window, the session saver will remember all your tabs (which is unarguably important to me). If you have two windows open, and one is accidentally closed (very easy because they have non-standard window buttons), those tabs are pretty much lost! Only if you quit the program via the menu will multiple windows be saved.

      My position is pretty well illustrated in this post on Google's Chromium Blog, illustrating that they really understand the dilemma that users like me are having with the tab behaviors. It's a really good read if you haven't dealt this this kind of thing, or modal behaviors before:

      http://blog.chromium.org/2009/01/tabbed-browsing-in-google-chrome.html

  7. Randy
    December 30, 2008 at 8:22 pm

    Has anybody seen anything that GOOGLE gave us that didn't go over great. This will too...

    I like it...

  8. JRWhyte
    December 28, 2008 at 6:22 pm

    Google Chrome is a good, simply and easy to use browser but, I can't send Hotmail emails using Google Chrome. Sometimes I have problem when I use Google Docs with Chrome and I need to open a new page and copy and paste the document that I am working.

  9. Edwin
    December 28, 2008 at 1:57 am

    What I want:

    1. Support master password, like firefox.
    2. Provide online service for syncing between multiple computers.

    Edwin
    InnovationGear.com
    MindVisualizer -- Rapid Visual Mind Mapping Software
    December 28, 2008

  10. Kira
    December 24, 2008 at 5:43 am

    I love chrome, now it's my fav browser. But i've changed PC to Mac not long ago .. and now i'm pleading Goggle to create Chrome for mac, pleaase! :)

  11. Sergey
    December 23, 2008 at 9:47 am

    It also needs to fix the hotmail bug..

  12. Serena
    December 23, 2008 at 9:01 am

    The only advantage I experienced with Chrome is, its read and execute the Javascript functions quickly when compared with other browsers...

  13. Raymond
    December 22, 2008 at 4:39 pm

    in terms of "chrome" as what the ie tab uses. The term refers to area of ff in which the ui and all extensions execute. Also, there's no need to create an entire rendering engine to mimic IE, most sites will check for IE by looking at the User Agent header, which is easily spoofed.

  14. alice
    December 22, 2008 at 4:00 pm

    No doubt. Chrome is great. But please give me the export bookmark option! and more extensions, extensions, extensions and extensions!!

  15. smoker
    December 22, 2008 at 10:19 am

    Just use Opera. It’s what Chrome copied anyway..

  16. Kane
    December 22, 2008 at 8:53 am

    The only advantage I experienced with Chrome is, its read and execute the Javascript functions quickly when compared with other browsers..

  17. Maria
    December 21, 2008 at 7:21 am

    No doubt. Chrome is great. But please give me the export bookmark option! and more extensions, extensions, extensions and extensions!

  18. David
    December 21, 2008 at 3:00 am

    It also needs to fix the hotmail bug.

  19. Civitas
    December 21, 2008 at 2:35 am

    In regards to your tab problem, you need to learn to not open so many tabs then.
    "oh dear! I have 15 tabs and they're starting to disappear!"
    You are retarded to have that many tabs open. Learn to be more efficient, just like your beloved chrome.

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 21, 2008 at 2:45 pm

      No UR RETARDED :P (jk)

      But in all seriousness, I don't know THAT many geeks that don't have similar usage. We're all drunk on the power of the tab. I have Google Reader open with all the things i click through behind it, then I have upcoming story idea articles, then stories I'm working on with all their sources open...

      If I use multiple windows, btw, it is much less efficient for some reason and if I accidentally close one window those tabs are lost (whereas I usually have session saver turned on so crashes don't hurt me).

    • Aibek
      December 24, 2008 at 5:08 pm

      @ Civitas

      Calling people with more than 15 people tabs retarted just shows nothing but ignorance from your side. There are dozens and dozens of Firefox extensions devoted to deal with tabs.

  20. cidman2001
    December 21, 2008 at 12:44 am

    I have all the major browsers...why I'm not sure. I've been using Chrome since the day it came out. It just so happened that I was having major problems with IE. I had been a faithful IE user up to that point. I was also using FF as second browser. I liked the extensions and all, but I found myself playing with stuff more than I was browsing or being productive.

    The simplicity of Chrome was kind of hard to swallow at first. But as I found myself zipping around the web I realized how much I didn't need all that other crap. I'll stick with Chrome and hope they only tweak it a bit here or there and avoid the inevitable bloat.

  21. ntopics
    December 20, 2008 at 11:45 pm

    Hopefully, browser to website compatability will be an issue
    of the past when the security strength of new
    browsers are accepted.

    thanks from tony

  22. Chihuahua Geek
    December 20, 2008 at 11:41 pm

    The only advantage I experienced with Chrome is, its read and execute the Javascript functions quickly when compared with other browsers

  23. venkat
    December 20, 2008 at 11:17 pm

    @Jimmy Rogers Nice article on Chrome ,all your suggestions are worthy to Google for look at,Flash is most annoying aspect chrome not handling flash content websites very well it just hangs and crashes ,Extensions are coming soon for Chrome ,and coming to auto detection of RSS Feeds in chrome they are already on the way to roll this to Chrome not yet enabled to us check here http://sites.google.com/a/chromium.org/dev/user-experience/feed-subscriptions

  24. Answer
    December 20, 2008 at 10:47 pm

    "make it easy for them to port their projects over to Chrome."

    function make_it_easy_for_firefox_extensions_to_work_in_chrome(firefox_extension);

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 21, 2008 at 2:37 pm

      awesome, never thought it would be that simple, lol

  25. bradleybradwell
    December 20, 2008 at 7:58 pm

    I used Chrome for a few months. It was extremely fast at first, but after a while it ran very slow. I also believe that Chrome is a little to simple for me. I prefer a not crowded browser, but a more informal one. Chrome just didn't fit my needs, and now I'm back to using Mozilla Firefox.

    However I'm not saying I'll never use Chrome. I may consider moving back to it after it develops a little further, and gets out of the "Post Beta" stages.

  26. Squiggles
    December 20, 2008 at 7:54 pm

    #4 sounds like a personal problem

  27. Betsy
    December 20, 2008 at 7:03 pm

    sorry for this stupid question but is chrome now supporting roboform?

  28. Josh
    December 20, 2008 at 6:34 pm

    Good list, except for # 4. How many people really have that many tabs open at any given point? What can you possibly do that you need 20+ tabs simultaneously?

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 20, 2008 at 7:13 pm

      Lol, be a blogger :P
      Oh and podcasters get a free pass too. I think the hosts of Buzz Out Loud (bol.cnet.com) had a long discussion about how many tabs they have open...

  29. dai
    December 20, 2008 at 6:08 pm

    It loads faster, but firefox is still the best!

  30. avo
    December 20, 2008 at 5:12 pm

    I hope they don't listen to you and not add tons of bloat.
    srsly, an IE tab and firefox tab option?
    those are the kind of things that should be in extensions, while the core program remains lightweight.

    Aside from that, I do agree.

  31. Andrewj
    December 20, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    this post is on the spot still chrome is good atm

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=763vmCrRBDg

  32. josh
    December 20, 2008 at 4:34 pm

    I hope chrome stays clean and light, but not bloated like firefox.

  33. Justin
    December 20, 2008 at 3:11 pm

    I would really like to know how Google decided to take Chrome out of beta (unlike its many other apps) without ever coming out with at least a beta version for the Mac OS or the Linux distros. This is very un-google-like. Google prides itself in taking apps out of beta once Google itself is satisfied with its current product. How can they be when only 1 out of 3 major OS's has been publicly tested and even the current Windows version isn't up to par with plug-in compatibility (mainly flash support)? This is appalling.

  34. Prince
    December 20, 2008 at 2:24 pm

    Google Chrome does have spell check just fyi, and I'd like to see some user interface specially when you first open it up and you see all your thumbnails. If you're like me then you have a bunch of quick links below the address bar and I would like to see that extended.
    The main thing I also want to see is to add more thumbnails to the homepage of google chrome.

  35. Jason Burns
    December 20, 2008 at 12:58 pm

    I have a dumb question. You seem to be comparing all the features to Firefox. Why not just use Firefox? You talk about how you love Chrome, but then say how it should do everything Firefox does, I guess I don't seen the need for another browser. Between Firefox, IE, Opera and Safari, I think Google is just too late to the party.

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 20, 2008 at 4:14 pm

      Well I'm really comparing Chrome to what everyone wishes Firefox was really like. It's not a perfect browser and until there is one, there will always be competition. Google's actually trying some newish stuff and their load times are generally pretty crazy.

  36. Kim Siever
    December 20, 2008 at 12:23 pm

    Mac support is the primary feature I want.

  37. Torley
    December 20, 2008 at 12:14 pm

    Re: tab management, Google Chrome deserves vertical tabs. Their sheer usefulness isn't apparent until you've been using them awhile, and then — WOW! — what a difference. I use the Tree Style Tab add-on in Firefox, and it's essential.

    Some might say, "What about all the wasted space?" Well, it won't be wasted if: (1) you have a lot of tabs open and (2) widescreen monitors (which are very common now) allow you to have a wider browser.

    Thanks for sharing your insights, Jimmy!

  38. john beard
    December 20, 2008 at 11:38 am

    I too use Chrome and like it better than Firefox. I almost never open IE. I did read last week that Chrome has potential password protection problems. So I may use FF for financial sites and Chrome for browsing.and Chrome for browsing.

  39. Frank
    December 20, 2008 at 11:26 am

    If it's not the best browser you've ever used why not use the best one?

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 20, 2008 at 11:37 am

      Good point....honestly the best browser I ever used (probably Firefox v2 when it really was the best available one) isn't the best anymore IMHO. Right now there isn't a "best browser" because they all have significant issues. I wouldn't say there is a power vacuum, but among "good" users, I feel like the title is up for debate.

      • Tristan
        December 20, 2008 at 8:04 pm

        And what exactly is a "good" user?

        Personally I dont like firefox. I use IE. Do I have firefox, chrome, and safari installed? Yup. Do I ever really use them? Nope. Firefox can be open for maybe an hour before I have to restart. Safari is uglier than crap. I find when firefox isn't crashing(only have Firebug installed) it renders pretty bad as well.

        Chrome is annoying because many sites have useful popups, like Intranet sites for instance or enterprise apps. There is no whitelist to allow a site to not have the popup blocked, if you start Chrome with the pop up blocker disabled it will still hide them. 3rd party cookies are on or off. Security options are non existent.

        Like it or not, IE just works. everything works with it. It doesnt crash because it has been open for an hour, it just works.

        It may not have all the extensions, but it does everything I need.

  40. Saddened
    December 20, 2008 at 11:15 am

    Your list isn't bad, but i'm gonna go off on a ledge here and say that you have no idea what it takes to program any of these things into a browser....trust me, it's not that easy and sometimes the things you mentioned aren't worth the time and effort to do.

    Three things i disagreed with on your post:
    1. Cross-browser compatibility. This is crap to begin with, a GOOD web developer can write code that works exactly the same in all browsers, even without using IE "hacks". Programmers just need to learn to code better.
    2. Giving users spellcheck...you do realize most people can't spell correctly anymore? That is due to crap like spellcheck. How about instead, people just learn to write properly?
    3. for tab management, just drag one tab into its own window and open more tabs there. Why do you need 30 tabs anyway? use the chrome home page to click on your faves and it even shows the newest bookmarks, but if you insist on loads of tabs, just create another window, each window can handle about 15-20 tabs without them becoming illegible.

    Also, your flash problem, it's weird, i have none in chrome, but my firefox dies all the time due to flash ads, i think it's more dependent on your computer and your flash version.

    Extensions will be great if they create a good api to make it easy for developers, then again it should be tough enough to keep idiots from making stupid extensions easily.

    Overall, i like your article, just wish you knew more about what it takes to program these things into a browser.

  41. basem
    December 20, 2008 at 11:04 am

    u forgot to mention themes . tho the default theme isn't bad

  42. Rory
    December 20, 2008 at 11:00 am

    A good list. Here's what I want:
    msi install
    group policy
    IETab-like functionality
    NTLM or better integrated authentication.

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 20, 2008 at 11:33 am

      Thanks Rory!

  43. Fernando
    December 20, 2008 at 10:38 am

    How about the damned "Downloads" folder Chrome creates right in your "My Documents" folder every time it launches? Even though I configured the downloads to go in another folder, no, chrome HAS to create another folder for caching or something. Why not store partial downloads inside Chrome's program folder instead???

    • Nimda
      December 20, 2008 at 12:31 pm

      Storing user data in the program folder is a terrible security risk (without some tweaking you'd have to run Chrom as an Admin, and in Vista you'd likely get UAC propts anytime you download something). FireFox just creates a temp file in the target download location, easy peazy

  44. Nick
    December 20, 2008 at 10:33 am

    Personally, I find most things other than extensions to be in good order, I personally enjoy the way the tab system is setup, although I know a lot of users are complaining about it's usage of RAM but for my computer I don't see a problem because my specs are high, but yes for other low end computers I would suggest doing some kind of tweaking to allow the same performance on all computers.

    My only concerns would be printing options such as "print preview". Being able to completely get rid of all cookies after closing Chrome would also be a nice plus.

    I also completely agree with the flash problem. Other than that I love Chrome!

  45. inthewoods
    December 20, 2008 at 10:28 am

    I'd like them to figure out how to make the new Yahoo mail work under Chrome before I switch fully. Whenever I bring it up, I get endless "reading from cache" messages, and the message never appears. Obviously this could be an issue with Yahoo, but Chrome won't be my full time browser till they (Google/Yahoo) and they add extensions.

  46. F Szcz
    December 20, 2008 at 10:26 am

    I guess you meant "compatibility" ... not "compatability".

    You should use a browser with spell check ;)

  47. Jason
    December 20, 2008 at 10:06 am

    The new tab page is big time annoying! I, personally, want new tabs to open up my homepage. However, some users want to customize the Google new tab page as it has no privacy options whatsoever.

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 20, 2008 at 11:31 am

      I think you can change that in the options. Just an FYI.

  48. Petr
    December 20, 2008 at 10:00 am

    Well written feature... I just hope that some bods in Google are reading these comments.

    Personally I'll refrain from the discussion FF or CH. For me they are both about flexibility, user friendliness and innovation. Something that is constantly missing in every reincarnation of IE.

    If I am not wrong your "spulshecker" has been fixed... I would strongly lobby for the open | save as function.

    One thing I can't wait to see is foxmarks for Chrome. Once that is in place I can fully benefit from using both CH and FF side by side... One for speed and the other for extended functionality.

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 20, 2008 at 11:29 am

      Yeah, spellcheck is actually there, but it's not functional, as I have been told by our alert readers!

      Thanks for the props!

  49. GerardM
    December 20, 2008 at 9:58 am

    When I compared four browsers for their ability to support the extended Latin script, Chrome did only better then IE. The problem is that the Wikipedias in African languages require great font support. Chrome does not show characters that exist on my system.

    I know that Google can do a great job; GMAIL does work flawlessly.
    Thanks,
    GerardM

  50. Claudiu
    December 20, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    Compatibility with roboform - roboformchrome.com

  51. Shep
    December 20, 2008 at 9:22 am

    Just use Opera. It's what Chrome copied anyway.

  52. Linh
    December 20, 2008 at 9:21 am

    It needs group policy management... as does firefox

  53. Scott
    December 20, 2008 at 9:06 am

    Leave Chrome alone. It's perfect just the way it is.

    • Ralph
      December 20, 2008 at 12:48 pm

      I'm glad to see someone stick up for this point of view. I'm very much in sympathy with the simplicity of Chrome. Of course I have my own wish list too -- see below -- but I use Chrome exclusively now unless there is some kind of compatibility problem. That means Firefox is rarely called into service, while Internet Explorer is used, as before, only for stubborn or stupid web sites that don't even try to be browser friendly. The result is satisfactory -- not perfect, but very satisfactory -- for my needs.

      That said, I have two items on my Chrome wishlist:

      1) It is too easy to accidentally close a tab while trying to bring it forward. I suggest that the first click on an unselected tab not be capable of closing the tab. Thus, when the tab is unselected, the close control (gray "x") does not appear.

      2) As a pure innovation which also adds little or no interface complexity, I suggest that tabs be converted to a dormant form after they have remained unselected for some (specifiable?) period of time. In effect, the dormant tab becomes a sort of temporary bookmark. This would avoid the memory depletion caused by having zillions of the things open at once. (This is, of course, exactly what happens to all the tabs when the browser is closed and then reopened with the "restore the pages that were open" option.) To keep the transition subtle, a paler, inactive image (say, a jpeg) of the rendered tab contents might be retained when the tab is dormant.

      • Lucas
        December 20, 2008 at 3:58 pm

        #2 might be an issue and would almost certainly have to be optional. It would affect pages that are designed as webapps that expect to have a certain amount of processor usage to update them selfs with HDR requests or are doing other processing while the user may be making better use of their time in another tab as it finishes. As a computer programmer I would not like it to have even more unexpected behavior on the client side, a plague of writing web apps. As a user with quad core and 4 gig of ram I have never needed this 'feature', and given that OSX all 64bit and Windows and Linux drivers are beginning to go that way (plus Vista 64bit is not the nightmare XP 64bit was). Ram will only be going up, as the price per gig perpetually goes down.

        • cidman2001
          December 21, 2008 at 12:29 am

          I have 3 kids all running Pentium 3 with the fastest machine having 512mb of ram and all running XP. You'll find, as I do in doing repair work, that there are tons of people out there that haven't bridged the "Vista Ready" hardware gap yet.

          You're right that the prices for ram will drop. That doesn't mean that everyone will run out and buy ram. I may just skip Vista all together or pick a Vista machine up cheap when Windows 7 comes out...

    • Chris
      December 20, 2008 at 7:45 pm

      Agreed. I feel like the main selling points of Chrome are its speed and simplicity. I agree on the point about RSS, because it's so prevalent and I actually do subscribe to a lot of RSS feeds. Extensions, though? I never use extensions anyway. I'd much rather have a fast, responsive, stable, and secure browsing experience. If I really felt a need to use extensions, I'd use Firefox.

  54. Haiboss
    December 20, 2008 at 6:03 am

    While using Chrome in a Wireless[dialup) internet connection environment, many times it fails to complete the request. Also chrome handles google group sites well, but when you browse some other sites such as godaddy its performance is not upto that of IE, Mozilla.

  55. Kirby Oak
    December 20, 2008 at 12:04 am

    I thought Chrome did have spell check? It can be a bit glitchy at times, I'll admit (especially in Gmail), but it is there. Or do you mean a spell check where it goes from one misspelled word to the next automatically?

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 20, 2008 at 1:13 am

      Yeah I was sort of in error. It only works in simple text boxes. If you're using wordpress in editor mode, for instance, it is non-existent.

      Mostly just wanted to use the strikethrough :P

  56. hamdan
    December 19, 2008 at 10:14 pm

    I work in both Linux and Windows machine, so my primary request will be the Linux version of Chrome (and Mac version will be a nice feat too).
    Google promised in the past that they will make the Linux version of Chrome. But, I do not see it now even Chrome has out of beta version. Is it so hard to make Chrome Linux compatible?

    • codeman38
      December 20, 2008 at 10:42 am

      Yeah... seconding the request for Linux and Mac ports (I use all three OSes). Running it under Wine is just not the same.

  57. Eric
    December 19, 2008 at 9:35 pm

    All in all, chrome has a long way to go. I think everyone is on the same page there. But in all reality, it has more potential than anything in a long time, and I am really looking forward to how it develops.

  58. RobertoTNK
    December 19, 2008 at 6:37 pm

    I'd like to see a online mylinks (mY favorites) related to my account. That way I could use my favorites on every computer I use.
    Advantages:
    1. Availability everywhere
    2. In case of a crash, recuperation after reinstalling

    • Dale
      December 19, 2008 at 9:09 pm

      ever heard of delicious?

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 19, 2008 at 9:26 pm

      I think Google did try to do this with BrowserSync (or something like this). Flock had integration with Delicious so that your local and cloud bookmarks would be in a mesh, but it was harder to use than you would expect. :/

  59. Bob
    December 19, 2008 at 6:34 pm

    30 tabs opened at once ? Do you really need to open up so many tabs ?

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 19, 2008 at 6:51 pm

      You better believe it. When I'm out researching for stories I usually have 5 tabs open PER STORY. If i'm working on a bunch, plus have Google Reader open and all the links I click through from that.......it ads up quickly.

      Plus 30 is nothing, just giving a round number...a lot of bloggers have this problem.

      • Alec
        December 20, 2008 at 11:20 pm

        Use different windows for each story, keeping them together. That way you have 5 windows with 6 tabs each. Much easier to keep things organized that way, IMO.

  60. acgrun
    December 19, 2008 at 6:32 pm

    But I think "simply is the best"
    if you want extension or plug-in, you use other browsers like firefox, when I use Google Chrome, I just browse fast!

  61. g
    December 19, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    Good list but chrome is still way too much of an infant to even think about replacing FF. It's right where FF was 2 years ago. The one thing I like about chrome is it is speedy but i suspect the reason for that is the lack of addons, etc. I'm still not convinced it is secure to use (there hasn't been a lot of discussion about chrome security).

    I continue to use chrome on a limited basis but FF still reigns as the champ of browsers for me.

    • Lucas
      December 20, 2008 at 3:40 pm

      It has nothing to do with add-on, base installs major browser speed is currently: Chrome, Safari, Firefox then after a gap IE6 and IE7. Firefox is caching up in speed with it's newer unreleased JavaScript engines but safari and chrome are both ahead of it in public and development builds. Also the improvement in multi-threading will help chrome if you have several web apps that are both doing a lot of work client side when you have multiple tabs open.

  62. Oscar
    December 19, 2008 at 5:27 pm

    RSS support.. wait a minute! Google Reader ring bell?

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 19, 2008 at 5:40 pm

      I actually use Google Reader, but the problem is that Google doesn't have any way to easily discover RSS or .xml feeds. This is fine if you do use Google Reader because it can autodiscover, but if you don't, it's a pain to look in the source of your target webpage.

      Just my humble opinion....

      • Matt
        December 20, 2008 at 12:30 pm

        Why are you looking at the source of the target webpage? There's usually RSS icons somewhere on the page.. ?

      • cidman2001
        December 21, 2008 at 12:16 am

        I just copy the url of the page into the "add a feed" button in Reader. It works pretty well for most sites.

  63. Joe
    December 19, 2008 at 5:09 pm

    nice list but what is so great about chrome? I've tried it and it's definitely better the IE but i don't see how its better then fire fox. its a bit faster but i'd rather have the firefox add ons then speedier internet. well i guess its just a matter of opinion. (did i just answer my own question?)

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 19, 2008 at 5:14 pm

      it also doesn't slow way down when it has a bunch of tabs open...RAM leakage and browser slowness are the two biggest problems for Firefox. It's just become a bit bloated for my taste.

      I still use it as a backup, but I'm really giving Chrome the old college try as my main browser.

      • Joe
        December 19, 2008 at 5:35 pm

        I forgot about the tabs things. Well i never have enough tabs open that it slows it significantly slows down, so im good with firefox but i use chrome sometimes.

  64. madforit
    December 19, 2008 at 9:44 pm

    Not tried it yet,but if your worried about google spying on you as each version has a unique id - use UnChrome.
    UnChrome replaces the unique id with a null value

    abelssoft.net/unchrome.php

  65. Ijaar
    December 19, 2008 at 9:38 pm

    What do you guys think about this (taken directly from Sun's website):

    "Google Chrome requires Java 6 Update 10 (Java 6u10), as indicated in the Google Chrome Help Center. The Chrome browser is new and not officially supported by Sun for Java 6. However, you may be able to use Chrome with Java 6u10 at your own risk. Sun will continue monitoring the acceptance of Chrome in the marketplace. "

    Taken from java.com/en/download/faq/chrome.xml

    I find it so funny. What do they expect, may be chrome will fall off the market??

  66. Michael Wales
    December 19, 2008 at 3:59 pm

    I love Chrome as well - it's my primary browser. I can agree with most of your suggestions here as well as add another: better downloads management.

    I wish I could clear out all of my downloaded items (the long list Chrome keeps, not the actual files) with a simple click on that page. Right now you have to right-click and select remove, each individual time.

    The toolbar that appears at the bottom is great but at times I just simply get confused. Did that file finish downloading? Which tab was that download in? Where did the download go?

    Also, the option to open files as soon as they are downloaded is buggy - sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. Particularly, my torrent files rarely ever open in uTorrent upon completion - unless uTorrent is already running.

    Finally, why not have a temporary storage area and reenable the "Open" option. I download A LOT of torrents and would just prefer the .torrent files to go to a temporary area that gets cleaned out every so often.

    • Jimmy Rogers
      December 19, 2008 at 5:13 pm

      @Michael

      I actually love Download Taskbar, an extension for FF, which does essentially what Google Chrome does. That being said, I do wish they had an "open" option, for exactly the same reason. I think it just needs to be tweaked.

      Sometimes I wonder if Googlers simple didn't test it before releasing it, there are so many little usability weirdnesses!

  67. Jorge Sierra
    December 19, 2008 at 3:58 pm

    Extensions is definitely the biggest missing feature that I'm looking forward to seeing.

  68. Matt Soreco
    December 19, 2008 at 3:24 pm

    Very good list.

  69. Amr
    December 19, 2008 at 3:16 pm

    So, basically it needs a Firefox..
    Number 5 (Extensions) is the most important feature, I just blogged two days ago about how Firefox can outlast other browsers.. and the key is extensions.

    Here's how
    amreldib.com/2008/12/how-firefox-can-outlast-other-browsers.html

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