The UX of Google Chrome

Google just released a new browser called Chrome. I am using it now to write this post.

When I go to I get the following:

Your User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 6.0; en-US) AppleWebKit/525.13 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/ Safari/525.13

In Safari, when I go to the same site I get:

Your User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 6.0; en-US) AppleWebKit/525.19 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.1.2 Safari/525.21

Look familiar?

Google just released WebKit, also known as the Safari browser, with some tweaks.  This is the same browser on the iPhone and also the same browser embedded into Adobe Air.

At first, I was annoyed that Google was creating ANOTHER browser.  I just don’t have time to test everything.  However, once I realized that this was just WebKit, my shoulders relaxed.  Now, all we need is for Opera (and Mozilla and Microsoft) to use WebKit too.  Then we could developer in peace!

Anyway, let’s jump to the UX of the Chrome browser itself.

There is very little chrome.  The application eliminates almost all of the “theme”.  It’s just a pure window with tabs and a thin toolbar.  I like this.  It’s actually perfect for demos.  It maximizes the real estate, which I KNOW is extremely limited in todays 16:9 world.

The developer toolbar sucks compared to Firebug.  I really should just write a list of requirements, but any toolbar without the easy ability to change CSS rules is just unhelpful for me.  I couldn’t figure out how to do his in Chrome.  I need to get more used to the JS Debugging.  It’s not intuitive.  I can’t understand why certain errors are happening.

Browsing is very fast.  In fact, using Marketo (a very JavaScript intensive application) was significantly faster than any other browser I have seen.

So, the short story is:  It’s Safari, without the ugly silver chrome.  Good first start.

This is going to be a big deal as Google tries to claim you can work through Google without Microsoft.

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