When I first read the article in eWeek, I was a bit sceptical. After all, like everyone else I knew, Safari was on the Mac when it arrived, but for the most part, I used it to download FireFox and continued on with that.
The other item they noted was speed. Safari was the fastest performing browser available for testing. So, not being one to simply believe what i read, I decided to try to benchmark things myself. Here are my benchmarks from my (underpowered!) Dell laptop I use at work (and at home when Nadine won’t let me use the iMac because she is so in love with it!!! ;-). The laptop sports an older Pentium M class with only 1 GB RAM, so application speed is a factor. As you can see in the results below, Safari’s performance score is impressive (1246), scoring over twice as high as FireFox (555) and blowing Internet Explorer (252) out of the water!
This was a much more significant difference than I expected, so I will be repeating these benchmarking tests on my Apple iMac at home in Mac OS X and also in Windows XP SP3 on Bootcamp and will post those results when I get the chance. My iMac has a 3 GHz dual core processor and 4 GB RAM, so I expect the results to be even more impressive. Maybe even enough to convince me to switch to using Safari!
However, in closing I must inform you that there is a downside… FireFox is well known for plug-in/extension support, whereas Safari lacks the same level of support. There are still plenty of add-ons for Safari, but not nearly as many as for FireFox. I know, because I use several myself –> TwitterFox for my Twitter feeds, ScribeFire to create blog pages, and TinyURL Creator to turn obscenely long web page urls into something much more manageable.
So, I guess I will have to decide which I prefer, speed and standards or the benefit of more plug-in support. I will also be seeking out some other browser benchmarking sites to get more feedback results, so if anyone has any recommendations, feel free to share them! In any case, Internet Explorer is relegated to the minor leagues!
Just finished testing Opera over lunch (let it run while I went out) and Opera scored about even with FireFox, so Safari definitely wins the crown on this machine!
iMac at Home
Here are the results from Safari 4 and FireFox 3.0.11 on my iMac and Mac OS X Leopard at home. A significant difference between them!