A Closer Look At Safari 4: How Does It Stack Up?

A Closer Look At Safari 4: How Does It Stack Up?

In early June, Apple released what is arguably its most significant upgrade to Safari yet: Safari 4. In typical Apple fashion, the company was quick to deem it the "world's fastest and most innovative browser." Today, we're setting out to find if that bold claim is indeed true, and we'll be breaking down the features of it--along with its fiercest competitors--on both the Mac and PC side.

One of the nicer things about Safari 4 is that Apple has made it available for both Windows (XP and Vista) as well as its own OS X operating system. It's also built around the Nitro engine, which--according to Apple runs JavaScript up to 4.5 times faster than the prior instance of Safari, nearly 8 times faster than Internet Explorer 8 and over 4 times faster than Firefox 3. It also supports HTML 5 and advanced CSS effects, and Apple claims that it can load HTML web pages over 3 times faster than IE 8 and Firefox 3. Apple also added a number of new, unique features that help to set this browser apart from the rest: Top Sites, Full History Search and Cover Flow.

A Closer Look At Safari 4: How Does It Stack Up?

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That's a pretty good article. I gave Safari 4 a try back when it was in late beta and found that I absolutely loved its ability to drag and drop tabs between open windows without resetting the contents (i.e. web-based chat or even mid-checkout at a store). I forget exactly what made me go back to Firefox, but I think it was a stability issue that is probably resolved.

Unfortunately for Safari 4, all the nice stuff for Firefox coupled with my deep seated hatred for Apple is just enough to keep me from going back to it now. There is one thing that could, however. If only they had made real use of that wonderful cover-flow interface for tabbing instead of just relegating it to the dusty corner that the history function hides in, I would be all over Safari 4 immediately. Why can't our browsers look nice?

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"coupled with my deep seated hatred for Apple" LOL, I second that!

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I've been using Opera for a couple years now and don't expect to turn back anytime soon.  The beta for Opera 10 is very stable and compatible also, so I've been using that.  The mail client for Opera is rediculously easy to setup and the Speed Dial great.  Obviously, half the other browsers have already copied this feature, but I haven't had a reason to try anything else.  Although, I do still use IE for downloads since IDM integrates right into the shell.

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