People often can’t answer the question “What is a browser?” People use them every day and many don’t even realize it.
Learning what they are, who makes them, and how to use them can help improve a user’s overall experience.
What is a Browser?
A browser is software used for browsing the Internet.
The most popular browsers right now are Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Apple’s Safari, Mozilla Firefox, and DuckDuckGo.
Using a browser, a user can run a search, or type in a web address to go to any website that exists on the Internet.
Users can save links to their favorite web pages (called bookmarks), save and manage their passwords to websites, and much more.
Browsers can also be used to view files that are not on the Internet. For example, it can display a PDF document when the device has no other program capable of opening it.
Choosing a browser
Each device will have one designated as its default. This means that any time the user clicks on a link to the Internet, the device will open that page using the default.
Some may be content to keep the default browser. Others may be inclined to use a different browser for reasons of performance, extension availability, or overall compatibility. People can have multiple browsers installed on any device at the same time.
Chrome is by far the most popular browser available at this time. It is available for download on nearly every type of device.
It offers excellent performance, easy to use interface and settings, and a variety of extensions.
Because it is available on nearly all computers, mobile phones and tablets, users only need to learn one set of conventions.
Chrome also offers seamless integration with Google account features, including a password manager, which may be useful for some people.
The Successor of the now defunct Internet Explorer; Microsoft Edge is the native browser for Windows computers. Edge is built using Chrome as its base.
Microsoft has added some features that make it more confusing to switch from Edge to another default browser. One example of this is the need to change the default for each individual file type, instead of selecting the default browser in one place.
Many settings share similarities to Google Chrome and can be used just as effectively.
Edge is a big improvement to Internet Explorer. Because it is Microsoft’s default browser and comes with Windows, it is often the choice of Windows users.
Safari is the native browser of all Apple Devices.
Safari is second most popular browser at this time. Because Apple’s and Google’s business models are so different, the privacy aspects of this browser stand out as a difference.
Firefox is an open-source browser. It boasts less RAM usage, different extensions, ad tracker blocking, and more. It may run better on a weaker machine than some of the alternatives.
Duck Duck go
Duck Duck Go is all about Privacy.
This browser does not store a user’s data, track history, or pass information along to to third parties such as advertisers.
This is valuable for those who seek a more private browsing experience without needing to change settings and monitor tracking.
What is a Browser’s Main Selling Points
A user should go for a browser that offers whatever criteria is most important to them. Most users will not notice any difference in performance among different browsers. This is because the speed of page retrieval and loading is mostly determined by other factors such as internet connection speeds.
We recommend that everyone have at least two browsers on each device. This is useful in case you ever have trouble accessing a page. You will then be able to determine whether the issue resides in the browser itself.
The main criteria include:
- Password management
- Ease of use
- Extension availability
- Security, such as monitoring unsafe websites
If you have any questions or our terminology wasn’t clear, please use our contact form to send us a message. Thanks!