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I’m in love: Chrome for iOS

I’m in love: Chrome for iOS

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Google released on June 29 a mobile version of Chrome for iOS devices. Since Chrome has 26% of the global browser market, the news were exciting for a lot of iPhone and iPad users who use Chrome for desktop.

What makes Chrome for iOS awesome

The user interface, similar to Chrome for desktop, is what’s most impressive; the navigation bar is less bulky than Safari’s, there is no footer while browsing, and accessing tabs and preferences is easy and intuitive. Better even, you can sync your Chrome bookmarks and settings with the iOS version and see which tabs are open on other devices you use. Chrome for iOS also allows you to make queries with your voice, whether you have Siri or not (Google has had this feature on its Google App since over a year now). Once I discovered all these features, I moved Safari in a folder. There is really no use for it anymore… or is there?

Key Features of Chrome for iOS

What’s missing on Chrome for iOS

First of all Chrome, although known for its legendary speed on desktop, is considerably reduced (read crippled) on iOS because of Apple’s imposed restrictions for all app developers: they do not allow the use of the Nitro Javascript engine on any other browser but Safari, therefore limiting greatly the speed other browsers can reach. This restriction is criticized and explained on AndroidAuthority if you wish to read more about the issue. This results in a browser which is, at best, as fast as Safari. So, sadly, no speed improvement.

Second, Chrome cannot be used as a default browsing app. Once again, it is hardly’s Google fault since Apple simply will not allow it. It’s the same phenomenon as with the Mail app which many users wish they could switch for another that would allow them to use all the features they need (i.e. sending emails from an address different than my default one is something Gmail enables you to do but not Apple).

Finally, the only other downside I have encountered is the lack of a function similar to Safari Reader. I do not use it that often but some people do and they might not want to switch browser because of this missing feature.

Does the good outweigh the bad?

I do believe that Chrome’s UI and option to sync bookmarks and opened tabs across browsers makes it a winner. The voice search for non-Siri users is also a nice perk. But what do you think? Will you make the switch?

About the author

Tina Mailhot-Roberge is a graphic designer, web designer and illustrator located in Montreal, Canada. She holds a BFA in Design from Concordia University and practices her craft professionally since 2007 .

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