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Web Browser Grand Prix: Chrome 25, Firefox 19, And IE10

Hardware Acceleration Performance

Native HTML5 Hardware Acceleration

This portion of the test suite remains unchanged, with WebVizBench and Psychedelic Browsing providing the native HWA results. The following chart is a geometric mean of these two benchmarks.

Internet Explorer takes the lead, leaving Firefox and Chrome duke it out for second place. Opera is totally out-gunned in native HWA.

The following two charts contain the individual results of WebVizBench and Psychedelic Browsing:

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Psychedelic Browsing


Both of our WebGL tests get replaced by new benchmarks in this installment of the Grand Prix. Mozilla's WebGL spin of the FishIE benchmark was maxed out long ago by our modern test system, and we simply like the new duo better than WebGL Aquarium from Chrome Experiments.

Once again, only Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox support WebGL by default.

Our first new test comes to us from the folks at Airtight Interactive. The aptly-named WebGL Demo renders a configurable number of multicolored, transparent, spinning cubes. We chose to render 2,000 cubes in order to bring our frame rates down into the 30 FPS territory.

This benchmark has Firefox in the lead at 37 FPS in Windows 7 and 34 FPS in Windows 8. Chrome takes second place at 30 frames per second on both platforms.

The WebGL Performance Test from Scirra is our other new WebGL-based benchmark. Unlike all our other tests in this category, it doesn't measure frames per second. Instead, the Scirra WebGL Performance Test continues to add objects until the frame rate drops below 30 FPS.

As with our previous set of WebGL performance tests, the new pair also conflicts. The Scirra test shows Chrome to be the more powerful browser, achieving nearly 133,000 objects on-screen before dipping under 30 FPS. Meanwhile, Firefox only manages about 60,000 objects before entering sub-prime performance territory.

The results of the two tests together are represented in the chart below.

Chrome's overwhelming win in the Scirra test place it about 25% ahead of Firefox in the WebGL composite score.


Facebook's JSGameBench is an all-around hardware acceleration benchmark that covers both native HTML5 HWA and WebGL. Like the new Scirra test, this also works by adding more elements, while maintaining a steady playable frame rate.

This benchmark is hosted from our local Web server.

As usual, Firefox steals the show in the HWA test from Facebook. IE10 manages to take second place ahead of Google Chrome. IE9 places fourth, while Opera barely places at all. This test has Firefox and IE10 doing substantially better in Windows 8.

Hardware Acceleration Composite Score

The HWA composite is the geometric mean of JSGameBench, and the HTML5 and WebGL composite scores.

With all five HWA tests taken together, Firefox retains its lead, followed by Chrome in second place. Internet Explorer is in third, while Opera is hardly on the map at all, placing last.

This brings us to the end of the WBGP's performance section, also marking the final change in our test line-up. Next, we take a look at memory efficiency.