What is Google Chrome and should you use it?

If you’ve been on the internet long enough, you’ve probably seen or heard of Google Chrome and its popularity. But what is Google Chrome and should you use it?

Let’s explore what Google Chrome is and if you should use it.

What is Google Chrome?

Google Chrome is, at the time of writing, the most widely used browser on the Internet. As you’d expect from the name, it’s a product of tech giant Google.

Google Chrome was first released in 2008 when browser technology was still under development. It used all the modern enhancements of the time and provided a fast and seamless experience for its users.

It should be noted that Google Chrome is different from Chrome OS. The former is a web browser, while the latter is an operating system that powers an entire computer. That’s why it has “OS” in the name; it means “operating system”.

If you’ve never heard of Google Chrome before, chances are your PC won’t have it installed by default. Don’t worry, you can still download it for free from the Google Chrome website.

Why do people use Google Chrome?

As we mentioned above, Google Chrome’s performance is among the best on the internet. It’s fast, it’s easy to use, and you can customize a lot with it.

Since Google helped create Chrome, you can also expect cross-compatibility with other products from the tech giant. For example, you can sign in to Chrome with your Google account, and it will keep tabs on your history and sync it with Chrome on your other devices.

Plus, if you have a Chromecast, Chrome makes sharing content on the big screen a lot easier. While other browsers struggle a bit to get the connection working, Google Chrome can stream content at the click of a button, as you might expect.

Essentially, Chrome is just a great browser; so great, in fact, that some Google competitors have ditched their own browser and replaced it with the codebase used by Chrome. This code base is called “Chromium”.

What is Chromium?

If you want to learn more about Google Chrome, it’s worth noting the codebase that powers it: Chromium.

Chromium is an open-source browser base that acts as the beating heart of Chrome. Because it’s free for everyone to view and download, you can make your own browser with it. This means that you will have a browser that has all the finesse and power of Google Chrome but contains personal touches that make your browser unique.

So if someone can download Chromium and make a browser out of it, why aren’t all browsers using it? Well, the truth is, it’s already happening.

Microsoft had its own browser, called Edge. It didn’t perform very well compared to other browsers, so the company ended up scrapping it and releasing a Chromium version of Edge.

The change was a huge improvement for the browser. In fact, in just over a year, Microsoft Edge has overtaken Firefox for users around the world.

As such, there are plenty of browsers that use Chromium, both old and new. That’s why it’s so important to talk about Chromium when we talk about Google Chrome; it is the beating heart of not only the most popular browser at the time of writing, but many other browsers as well.

Should you switch to Google Chrome?

So, you now know that Google Chrome is the most popular browser, as well as one of the most powerful entries. However, just because something is both popular and good doesn’t mean you should automatically use it.

On the one hand, Google Chrome is definitely not the first choice when it comes to protecting your privacy. Google recently revealed how much data it tracks when a user uses Chrome or its search engine, and you may be concerned about the amount of data collected.

Related: Google Chrome knows too much about you: Here’s what to do

Google says it collects this data to help deliver the services it provides. As such, it is up to you to make the judgment. Do you believe Google when it says data collection is for your own good? And if you do, are you comfortable using the browser to write down everything you do?

If the answer to any of the questions above is “no”, it’s best not to use Chrome and use a browser that is more privacy friendly. You can even upgrade to a Chromium-based browser to retain all the performance of Chrome without Google collecting your data.

On the other hand, the above may not be very important if you are already subscribed to the Google ecosystem. If you have an Android phone handy, a Chromecast plugged into your TV, and a Google Home Hub waiting for your beck and call, using Chrome lets you bring your computer into that same space seamlessly.

For example, you can sign in to your Google account in Chrome, and it will sign in to all of your other Google devices. For example, you can send tabs from your PC to your phone or cast a tab from your PC to your TV.

As such, using Google Chrome depends on whether you like the performance of the browser, are ok with the data collected by the browser, and have a Google ecosystem in your home. These metrics will be a good metric to know if Google Chrome is worth your time or not.

Get more at home with Google Chrome

Google Chrome is the most popular browser on the internet, but it’s not for everyone. Now you know what the browser is, why people love it, and whether it’s best for you or not.

If you decide to download Chrome, you might notice that it has a habit of consuming RAM. Luckily, there are ways to curb its hunger, like using the browser’s built-in task manager to close offending tabs.

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