Three major released have landed since our last impromptu Web Browser Grand Prix (WBGP4): Chrome 12, Firefox 5, and Opera 11.50. Can Chrome or Opera regain the WBGP championship? Will Mozilla Firefox ever overtake Microsoft's IE9 in the rankings?
This article is the fifth time we've done comprehensive Web browser testing here at Tom's Hardware. When we started out, the name of the game was speed, hence Web Browser Grand Prix. But each of the top five Web browsers have surpassed the speeds seen just one generation ago. Today, there is much more to these applications than how quickly they perform in speed testing. The WBGP benchmarking suite is starting to really take a balanced look at all aspects of these applications. The placing tables below divide our benchmarking suite into the four currently-tested categories: performance, efficiency, reliability, and standards conformance.
Google manages to grab the top spot away from Microsoft in performance-oriented testing with Chrome 12. Internet Explorer 9 is right behind though, grabbing second place with Firefox 5 hot on its heels in third. Opera solidly lands in fourth place, and Safari again brings up the rear.
In raw efficiency placing, IE9 still takes the top spot. Chrome 12 and Firefox 5 come in second and third (respectively), with Safari in fourth and Opera in last place.
|Reliability Testing (1 Test)|
|First Place||Second Place||Third Place||Fourth Place|
|Firefox, Opera||Chrome||Internet Explorer||Safari|
In the reliability testing, only Firefox 5 and Opera 11.50 earn perfect scores to tie for first place. Google Chrome falls into second place, while Microsoft IE9 is a miserable third. Apple's Safari just cannot hold up to the stress.
When it comes to the table above, the order appears to be Opera, Chrome, IE9, Safari, Firefox. However, we have a better way to grade each browser in terms of standards conformance. Unlike performance or efficiency testing, conformance tests have defined minimum and maximum scores. We can standardize each test's maximum score to 100 (denominator), add the adjusted scores together (numerator), divide the numerator by 400, and then multiply the result by 100 to come up with a grade.
By standardizing the scoring of each test and combining the results, we take scale into account. As you can see from the chart above, it's Chrome 12 that comes out on top for standards conformance, with Opera 11.50 following closely in second place. The third place victory goes to Firefox 5, with Safari in fourth and IE9 scoring the lowest.
The finishing order for total raw placing is pretty clear: Chrome, IE9, Firefox 5, Opera, Safari.
- The Web Browser Grand Prix, Part 5
- The Lineup
- Web Browser Grand Prix Setup
- Performance Benchmarks: Startup Time
- Performance Benchmarks: Page Load Times
- Performance Benchmarks: Flash, Java, Silverlight
- Performance Benchmarks: HTML5
- Performance Benchmarks: HTML5 Hardware Acceleration And WebGL
- Efficiency Benchmarks: Memory Usage And Management
- Efficiency Benchmarks: Battery Life
- Reliability Benchmarks: Proper Page Loads
- Final Placing Tables
- Analysis And Conclusion