RT Cunningham


The Best Web Browser For Any Computing Device is a Matter of Choice

web browser What’s the best web browser? The one you feel comfortable with. If you do a quick web search, you’ll find more than a dozen to choose from.

Some web browsers are designed for laptops and desktops while others are designed for mobile phones. Some are designed for both. The most popular web browser, it seems, is the one that works almost everywhere.

My Laptop Web Browser

A quick bit of history is in order. In 1994, I started out with Netscape Navigator on Windows 3.1 (Windows for Workgroups). Since Windows didn’t support anything Internet back then, I had to install more software to make the web browser work, furnished by my first ISP (“Internet Direct” in Phoenix, Arizona).

I kept upgrading Netscape Navigator and eventually switched to Internet Explorer when Microsoft bundled it with the Windows operating system. I switched to SlimBrowser because it had tabs, long before I switched to Firefox (after it was renamed from “Phoenix” and “Firebird”).

Google Chrome became my favorite web browser shortly after it became available in 2008. I waffled between it (and Chromium) and Firefox for years. After I started using Linux as my operating system on a full-time basis, I rarely used Firefox for anything. I switched to Vivaldi earlier this year and now I’m looking for something better.

My Mobile Web Browser

My cell phone is an Android phone. Both Google Chrome and Firefox work on it. I rarely use a web browser on my phone, so what I use isn’t a big deal. Some web browsers only work on cell phones and I try to avoid them even if I like them. Dolphin Browser is one such animal (if you’ll pardon the pun).

When I’m on Facebook and I click on a link to a web page, I choose Google Chrome as a temporary choice. That’s only because I’m familiar with it. I refuse to use the built-in Android web browser and I can’t uninstall it. The only other choice is Firefox, at least for now.

Testing Web Browsers

I want to use a lightweight web browser on my laptop. Having other web browsers installed doesn’t use more memory (unlike Windows), so I don’t have to remove them. I’m currently testing Opera, but I don’t like it. Vivaldi looks too much like it, which makes sense since the developers came from Opera.

There are some web browsers I can’t test. There used to be a Windows version of the Safari web browser, but not anymore. And there isn’t a Linux version. I guess Apple only wants to support software on Apple products.

I won’t bother with Chinese-owned web browsers, like Avant and Maxthon. When I exclude the mobile web browsers from my master list, along with those, my master list gets smaller. I still have a lot to check.

The one I’m testing next is Midori. I use the Linux Mint XFCE desktop and Midori was designed for the XFCE desktop. Unfortunately, Linux Mint has Firefox as the default web browser. It’s okay, though, because that web browser is in the Linux Mint software repository.

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By RT Cunningham
October 11, 2017
Cell Phones