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Apple Says Safari 4 is World's Fastest Browser

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 32 comments
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Apple boasts Safari 4 is faster than both IE8 and Firefox 3.

It was Apple’s big day with plenty of Mac and iPhone related news, but there was a lone piece of Windows-compatible software that also made it out – Safari 4.

Apple released a beta version of Safari 4 in February of this year, and the final version today with its “Nitro engine” runs JavaScript up to 4.5 times faster than Safari 3.

When compared to other browsers, Apple boasts that Safari 4’s JavaScript is up to eight times faster than IE 8 and more than four times faster than Firefox 3; and Safari 4 loads HTML web pages more than three times faster than IE 8 and three times faster than Firefox 3.

Safari 4 includes HTML 5 support for offline technologies and support for advanced CSS Effects. Apple at the WWDC was also proud to point out that Safari 4 is the first browser to pass the Web Standards Project's Acid3 test.

Safari is built off of WebKit, which is the open source browser engine that’s also used by popular mobile browsers and even Google’s Chrome. It’s interesting that Apple chose to compare Safari 4 against IE8 and Firefox 3, but left out comparisons with Chrome 2.

Both PC and Mac users can download Safari 4 free of charge here (as soon as Apple updates the site).

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  • 13 Hide
    waffletronic , June 8, 2009 9:34 PM
    Apple always claims it's the best and fastest. I'd assume they're full of it, or there's some sort of * that defines the parameters of their superiority.
Other Comments
  • 3 Hide
    IzzyCraft , June 8, 2009 9:26 PM
    May be faster but i still wont use it over Opera 10 Beta.
  • 7 Hide
    TheFace , June 8, 2009 9:27 PM
    Well why would they compare it against Chrome 2? Aren't IE8 and FF3 out? Chrome may be out, but Chrome 2? Tell me if I'm wrong, but I would assume that they would compare a final product against other final products. Otherwise why would they compare Safari 4 against FF3 and not FF3.5b?
  • 13 Hide
    waffletronic , June 8, 2009 9:34 PM
    Apple always claims it's the best and fastest. I'd assume they're full of it, or there's some sort of * that defines the parameters of their superiority.
  • 5 Hide
    Hanin33 , June 8, 2009 9:37 PM
    so wot are we talking about? mere seconds? fractions of seconds? and it seems to me the biggest issue that affects loads times, besides the level of flash crap on the page, is the way the site is coded. i suppose if all the sites were coded in a single uniform standard this might be a meaningful metric to talk about... but since there's many standards and levels of coding, i don't see how these speed arguments mean much. let's not forget that load time also includes network latency and bandwidth concerns for your regular user. these sandbox tests showing load times for content hosted on the same machine mean little when they all still have to wait for the content to be fed to them in the real world. next!!!!
  • 0 Hide
    Dreasconse , June 8, 2009 9:51 PM
    Isn't Mozilla working a a much faster javascript engine for Firefox?
  • 1 Hide
    funkjunky , June 8, 2009 9:52 PM
    Hanin33: What you initially said is true and the reason why browsers need to render faster and run javascript faster. If everyone wrote perfectly effecient pages we could all use FF2 and be happy, however on one focuses on effecience... actually as a web developer I can tell you it is one of the lowest priorities next to usability and functionality. Usability usually takes up all extra time so effeciency is nearly ignored, that is where a really fast JS engine and a fast CSS and HTML renderer comes in.

    Also the fact that it says it 100%'d acid3 is interesting... IMO their isn't even a point comparing it to the absolutely terrible peice of shit that IE8 is... fuck I hate internet explorer. My hate for Microsoft is only topped by my hate for their internet explorer software... ruining web dev.
  • -1 Hide
    funkjunky , June 8, 2009 9:54 PM
    oh also I think it would have been fair for them to compare safari to chrome 1.???. Really you don't need 2... 1 is still damn fast. I wonder if it can run faster than chrome... I'm thinking no... but maybe.

    dude like chrome runs 3d smoothly in javascript! No other browser that I have tested does this... the Safari beta was no exception.
  • 4 Hide
    iulianx , June 8, 2009 10:06 PM
    Quote:
    Safari 4 is the first browser to pass the Web Standards Project's Acid3 test

    Yeah right. Opera 10a did that a long time ago. And it's alpha, imagine what it'll do when it'll be ready.
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , June 8, 2009 10:18 PM
    Headline: "Tom's Readers Say Apple is World's Most Untrustworthy Company"

    I won't use anything they make, ever, period. I have no problems with Firefox, there's no reason to give them a chance. Apple = pwn2own fail crew
  • 0 Hide
    danielkza , June 8, 2009 10:32 PM
    DreasconseIsn't Mozilla working a a much faster javascript engine for Firefox?

    It's in FF 3.5 betas already, and it's more like an improvement of the current SpiderMonkey engine than a full rewrite. Still, it's at least 50% faster in all cases, and in some up to 40x.
  • 0 Hide
    the_one111 , June 8, 2009 10:53 PM
    Apple can kiss my A**

    They have always claimed to be the fastest and best in everything, computers, phones, Mp3 players, but when you actually compare the hardware and software you get dumped cold like Steve Jobs and his little lackeys did at their High school proms.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , June 8, 2009 11:46 PM
    ...because our web browsers just aren't fast enough... I think I'll go try Safari, as I tire of the latency I experience in web browsing which is due to the javascript engine in my web browser... Notice how CPU useage hits 100% during the loading of a web page?

    /sarcasm
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , June 8, 2009 11:50 PM
    To the person who say's an alpha version of Opera passed Acid3 "a long time ago", perhaps you should read the Wikipedia page about Acid 3:

    "On 25 September 2008, a development version of Safari was the first browser to produce a smooth animation on the reference hardware, and thus was the first to fully pass the Acid3 test. Opera, having its own issues with smooth-animation Acid3 performance, has not yet passed."
  • 3 Hide
    falchard , June 9, 2009 12:08 AM
    Too bad Safari is also the worst Internet Browser in terms of functionality and bugs.
  • 1 Hide
    anamaniac , June 9, 2009 12:10 AM
    Honestly, I love the history behind FireFox.

    Netscape challenged mammon, and Netscape starts winning, with each fist shreading the armor of mammon, revealing mammon's vulnerable flesh, but is eventually destroyed when mammon counters, lacerating the flesh needed for the function of life. The phoenix has been defeated. While mammon slept, the defeated warrior resurrected once again to finish the battle. The phoenix knew the battle was far from over. The phoenix resurrected in the form of a fox. Mammon underestimated the slyness of the fox, laughing at its apparant weakness, and the fox used deceit and stealth to grab mammon's throat when least expected. The phoenix now bites at mammon's throat, and every time someone shreds the rough scales of mammon for the soft comforting and caring fur of the fox, mammon feels the sharp teeth of the phoenix bite ever so slightly more into the arteries that keep him alive. The phoenix may be destroyed once again, but just like before, will be reborn in a ceremony of fire, burning all who dare interfere, rightly so. Mammon has done great, mammon has done historic things. Mammon however isn't the answer to all problems in life, and does not understand that. The phoenix is reborn with unseen spirit and support every time because it rekindles the fire in our hearts. The phoenix contributes to all, and all can contribute to the phoenix, giving our offerings to force the fire to burn everso hotter. The phoenix loves us, and thus we love it back. Mammon does not know love, it is only cold steel produced for profit.

    Okay, I'll stop...

    Oh yeah, FireFox also has a robot, beat that Microsoft!

    I use FireFox because of the original Netscape vs. Microsoft battle.
    I use FireFox and I'm devoted to the cause. I love Microsoft dearly, but sometimes they should take into account why Netscape managed to push back orignially.
    I do believe the European lawsits were going to far. Having a OS without a browser to download FF in the first place sounds horrid. ;) 

    If I ever were to down Netscape, it would be for Google. From all I've seen, Chrome so far is amazing. I have no want nor need for Safari of Internet Explorer. I understand those already comfortable with it may prefer to, but ertainly not me.

    Oh yeah, FireFox also has ADBlocker. No way to dis that. It is horrid going to a website, giving you twenty flash adds, draining all resources, all blinking several colours, almost inducing a seizure.

    Plus I like open source. If you find a problem and know how to, just fix it. Though I don't care for the feel of Opera, but it's still a feasible option.
  • 1 Hide
    The Schnoz , June 9, 2009 12:15 AM
    iulianxYeah right. Opera 10a did that a long time ago. And it's alpha, imagine what it'll do when it'll be ready.

    Yeah, it will get a score of 101 out of 100.
  • 1 Hide
    tipoo , June 9, 2009 12:20 AM
    This 5x faster than Chrome thing is very sketchy to me.
  • 0 Hide
    keither5150 , June 9, 2009 1:46 AM
    I gave it an honest try ( about 3 months of solid use)

    I am now back with IE8.

    I didn't notice that it was faster. Another Apple half truth?

    I also tried Firefox.
  • 0 Hide
    afrobacon , June 9, 2009 4:33 AM
    I've tried FF3, IE8, Opera 10 beta, and Safari 4; it's not an extensive list but enough for comparison imho.

    I can easily support their claim to be the fastest, but they lack in everything else, minus the shiny graphics (depending on your preference.) The only browser I can recommend them over is IE.

    Still nothing quite compares to FF, except of coarse Opera.
  • 1 Hide
    eddieroolz , June 9, 2009 5:35 AM
    All you will find in Apple is full of bs.
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