Yesterday saw Google’s entry into the Browser wars. Launched initially for Windows, later releases will include Mac and Linux/Unix-based software.

The SEO industry in particular has been abuzz with the launch, with many taking special time out of their day to test the new tool (Ref: Twitter – you know who you are).

However, what is the big deal?

I will be honest, my first impressions were somewhat underwhelming. However, first impressions aren’t always the best, and there is no doubt that if we lift up the bonnet of Chrome there is certainly something very powerful waiting.

One of the biggest features is the new Chrome URL bar. Unlike traditional browsers, which merely use this space purely for the URL, the Google Chrome interface combines the traditional URL features, with search suggestions (termed the OmniBox).

This, in my opinion, is one of the better features of the new browser, as there is no doubt many people do type terms into the URL bar, and such a feature merely serves to hone and refine such activity.

The other clever bit here is that this feature is intuitive and develops with your search and browsing behaviour (where other search activity exists ie Amazon, Ebay etc).

I understand that no data is currently being directly collated by Google, however there is no doubt that this, along with a number of other plugins and enhancements, is in the pipeline. It is only a matter of time before such activity is undertaken, particularly with reference to the enhancement of personalised search.

In my opinion, the browser offers huge potential to Google. Various social media mechanisms are going to play an important part in the future of Chrome – just look at iGoogle and the variety of plugins, widgets and gadgets currently integrated there.

Surely this is something that has been considered in the development of the browser, and much like Google itself, I can’t help thinking that Open Source has to play an important part in the future evolution of Chrome.

Another dark horse has to be Youtube. Google still hasn’t worked out a way to significantly monetise the service, and it is the integration with Web 2/3.0 that will be at the forefront of Chrome moving forward.

To conclude, there is no doubt that Chrome is an early stage product. But given the fact it is Google's, it stands a better chance than most of succeeding in an increasingly competitive landscape.

The thought does linger at the back of one's mind – is it just the first stage in a much bigger plan?

Peter Young is the SEO Manager at Mediavest .

The views of the author do not necessarily represent those of the publisher.


Published 3 September, 2008 by Peter Young

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Comments (2)


John Wards

The big deal is that this browser blows the rest out of the water when it comes to javascript performance.

Anything else is just fluff.

With all the "web 2.0" apps we have kicking about, javascript can be dog chrome its fast and reliable.

Try Gmail in IE, Firefox etc. Then try it in chrome. If your worried about Gmail being coded for Chrome, try Hotmail Live.

almost 10 years ago

Anthony Sharot

Anthony Sharot, Search Marketing Director at

I agree that the javaScript performance is what sets it apart, although it has a few other nice touches too.

For example, its incognito mode appears to be designed to take the wind out of Microsoft's sails, as that was one of the touted features of the upcoming IE 8.

Also, it offers better thread isolation, so one tab freezing won't crash the whole browser, is entirely open source and poses one big question:

Will Google continue to plug FireFox now that Chrome has been launched?

I'm guessing that they won't, which must be a blow to Firefox's future distribution, even if their PR department claims otherwise.

Firefox is safe for a while, as Crome doesn't as yet have a single plugin, one of the biggest advantages of Firefox being the dozens of handy plugins, but then, with SEO already revolving around Google, how long will it be before there's tons for Chrome too?

almost 10 years ago

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