I remember cursing at my screen as Microsoft Internet Explorer (MSIE) would crash, or struggle to load a page on the pathetic connections we had back then. “Damn you all to hell”, I would shout out at no one in particular. Scratch that, it was targeted squarely at the MSIE team. However, the lure of the internet and all of its wonders would keep us coming back for more, despite all the pain. I swear I never felt as much as a drug addict as I did back then.
Then, like a wave of fresh air, Opera 4 came along and changed everything. You could get all the highs of the internet, and suffer none of the consequences of experiencing it on MSIE. Pages loaded fast, you could skin it, play with it, customise it, and it was W3C compatible. Even then, you had to keep MSIE around for all of the sites that Opera couldn’t render properly. “That’s not their fault”, I would scream at people who would laugh at me because I’d paid for my license of Opera – it was a payment meant to remove ads, but I paid because I wanted to support someone who stood up to the big bully that MS was. Although Opera was older than IE, and more a competitor of Netscape Navigator, it was only with version 4 that I took notice of it. And boy did I take notice! It was version 5 that I‘d paid for…
Then came Firefox in 2004. And my! Was it nice! It meant I could finally relegate the bug-riddled IE to the garbage dump where it belonged. I’d still use Opera for most things, and switch to Firefox for the few sites that didn’t play well with Opera. “It’s far more secure this way,” I would boast to anyone who would make the mistake of asking, and several who never even asked. Despite having my own PCs, I would still pay to go to cyber cafes, just to go about installing Opera and Firefox on all systems – until I was eventually banned.
Then it happened. Suddenly major security flaws were being found in Firefox seemingly every day! IE users and developers were having their last laugh. Thankfully, Google had released a browser in 2008, which I eventually shifted to full time in 2009. That year also ended my obsession with Opera, which I just didn’t reinstall after a PC format.
It’s been over 8 years since I’ve been using Chrome, and I’ve grown to hate it as well. I’d have moved, but none of the other browsers performed as well. Google had trapped me by offering the best browser, but only by a thin margin. Then came Quantum last month, and boy was it an improvement. Not only was it the best Firefox ever, it was actually better than Chrome in terms of performance. And that’s all I need – some may want a browser that you can customise to match the rugs in your living room, I just want something lightning fast, with no bugs, hangs or crashes. Then, the Digit Test Centre proved it via a browser shootout, and I’ve finally uninstalled Chrome.
Firefox is visibly faster and in general is a pleasure to use. I usually have over 40 tabs open, usually because people are wrong on the internet, and the universe needs me to yell at them about that. Now with Quantum, I can open 50, and it doesn’t kill my high-end system, whereas Chrome would cause it to crawl like an old Windows 95 system! Finally, my octa-core CPU is being used properly, and my 60 Mbps connection felt fast again!
Should you shift to Firefox now? Hell no. Stay away from my browser. You fools will make it popular again, and cause it to be targeted by hackers. Although that seems unlikely now that Mozilla has released the Facebook Container extension to isolate your web-browsing from being tracked by the social media platform. But still, please stay with your crappy Chrome with all those exotic extensions you probably use and leave me and the Fox be. You’re welcome to play Stockholm Syndrome with your tormentor, while I zoom ahead without idiotic Aww Snap messages that were getting old.