What’s The Best Browser on the Mac?

We’ve come a long way since the days of Internet Explorer 6.0. This browser was at the heart of the virus and malware epidemic from 2002–2004. Computer repair shops made their living by being able to clean up infections that IE 6 let in the back door. Windows XP Service Pack 2 did a lot to keep XP more secure, but the damage had already been done. In late 2004, Firefox 1.0 was released and all the technology enthusiasts flocked to it (and tried to switch everyone else). From the ashes of Netscape Navigator, Firefox had risen up to save us.

Fast forward to 2015, and things look a lot different. Safari is built into Mac and iOS devices. Chrome is the dominant third-party browser. Internet Explorer is still in the lead, but it is slowly dropping over time. Safari is still in single digits, while Firefox is at 12%. These are desktop numbers, though.

Mobile looks a lot different, though:

If we consider mobile devices to be the platforms of the future, Safari and Chrome are really the only two players at this point. When it comes to mobile, I recommend people use the built-in browser. On iOS, I recommend Safari. On Android, I recommend Chrome.

Desktop is a different discussion. Chrome on the Mac is really good, and it’s cross-platform so it also works well on Windows. Safari is built-in to the Mac, so it always supports the latest OS. I was using Chrome on the Mac until I read this blog post. Using Safari on the Mac gets you an extra hour on your battery on average.

After switching to Safari, my Mac felt like it had a brand new battery. Chrome supports some awesome features like frequent updates, built-in flash (no manual updating), syncing with your Google account, and rock solid Google Drive support. Safari works well, syncs bookmarks to iOS, and sips on your battery, though. When it comes to laptops, battery is the great equalizer, though. If using a certain browser can give me more time before I need to charge, I’ll use it sight unseen. While Chrome is awesome, it’s simply devastating to your laptop battery

Bradley Chambers has been the Director of Information Technology at Brainerd Baptist School since 2009. At BBS, he manages a network of Apple and Chrome OS devices. He also writes at Tools & Toys. The Sweet Setup, and 9to5Mac.

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