This article lists the most popular web browsers, a brief overview, and links to more information.
What is a web browser?
A web browser is a software application that operates on a computer, laptop, or mobile phone. It enables a user to display and interact with text, images, and other information typically located on a web page, at a website on the internet, or a local area network.
Web browsers allow users to access information on pages and sites by clicking on hyperlinks. Most web browsing tools can be downloaded for free via the internet or your favorite app store.
List of the Most Popular Web Browsers
The list of the most popular web browsers occasionally changes as software companies compete for the top position. Following is a list of the most popular web browsers at the time of this writing, with a brief description of each.
Google Chrome is developed and distributed by Google. It combines a minimal design with sophisticated technology to make the internet faster, safer, and more accessible. It runs on computers, laptops, tablets, and mobile devices. It is available to download for free.
In addition, numerous browser extensions are available in the Google Play Store. Most are available for free, but some have a nominal charge. These extensions can significantly extend Chrome’s capabilities.
I use Google Chrome almost exclusively due to its speed, stability, and ease of use. Learn more about Google Chrome.
Safari – Apple Safari is the world’s second most popular web browser, with a market share of over 19%. It is a fast, secure, and easy-to-use macOS, iOS, and iPadOS browser. Apple Computer developed the browser in 2003. It is available as part of the Mac OS X operating system installed on Mac computers and laptops. Also, it is installed on iPad tablets and all versions of iPhones, making it one of the top most used browsing tools.
Efficient, built-in tools help you save, find, and share your favorite web content quickly and securely. It works with iCloud to have a consistent browsing experience across your Apple devices.
The Safari surfing tool does not run on Windows. You can run Safari, Chrome, and Firefox on Apple devices.
Microsoft Edge is a web browser developed by Microsoft. It was first released in 2015 as part of Windows 10 and Xbox One. It was later ported to other platforms as a fork of Google’s Chromium open-source project: Android and iOS, macOS, older Windows versions, and most recently, Linux.
Microsoft Edge is based on the Chromium web browser, also used by Google Chrome. This means Edge can run most of Chrome’s extensions and websites. However, Edge also has some features that are not found in Chrome, such as:
- A built-in reading mode that makes websites easier to read
- A tracking prevention feature that blocks websites from tracking your browsing activity
- A built-in ad blocker
- A dark mode
Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer, abbreviated IE or MSIE, is a graphical website browser developed by Microsoft. It is included as part of the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems. It used to be the most widely used browser since 1999 but recently lost its market share to Chrome.
It provides improved navigation through tabbed browsing, web search right from the toolbar, advanced printing, easy discovery, reading and subscription to RSS feeds, and much more. Microsoft Internet Explorer is available for free.
Internet Explorer is a solid, secure program and a close runner-up to Google Chrome. However, I find that Chrome is much faster and easier to use. Learn more about Microsoft Internet Explorer.
Mozilla Firefox is a free, open-source, cross-platform, graphical content surfer developed by the Mozilla Corporation and other volunteers.
Mozilla Firefox began as part of the old Navigator web browser component of the Mozilla Application Suite. However, Firefox has become the Mozilla Foundation’s main development focus, replacing the Mozilla Suite. It is available for free download. It’s a good option, but not as good as Google Chrome.
Opera – Opera is an Internet suite that handles everyday Internet-related tasks, including visiting sites, sending and receiving e-mail messages, managing contacts, and online chatting. Opera has a built-in ad blocker, VP, and battery saver. It is available for free.
The following are less popular options. Beware of using any browser that is no longer being updated. This makes it vulnerable to security flaws, viruses, and malware.
Avant – Avant has a user-friendly interface.
Brave – Brave is a privacy-focused web browser that blocks ads and trackers by default, offering a faster and more secure browsing experience. It rewards users with its native cryptocurrency for opting into privacy-respecting ads. Brave also supports Chrome extensions and is available on multiple platforms.
Camino – Camino was an open-source browsing tool developed to provide the best possible experience for Mac OS X users. However, it fell behind the fast pace of technological advances in this area. It is no longer being updated.
Kingpin – Kingpin is a private surfing option from Limelick Software that helps users browse the web in incognito mode, and ad-blocking is always turned on. It does not record or store your internet history, won’t store cookies, and won’t store credentials such as passwords. It was launched in August 2019, so it is relatively new. It is compatible with Windows 7/8/10. You can download it for free.
Lunascape – Lunascape integrates three rendering engines (Trident, Gecko, WebKit) into a single application. It has additional built-in functions, so you don’t have to install many extra add-ons and extensions. I like the “highlighted search” feature, which allows you to highlight a word or URL, right-click, and perform various tasks such as search, go to URL, translate, search with Amazon, and more.
Maxthon – Positioned as a “browsing assistant,” Maxthon provides basic browsing functionality. It includes features that improve your surfing experiences, such as note-taking, password-keeping, and virtual email inboxes. You may consider it somewhat obscure, but its helpful features may be worth checking out.
Vivaldi – Vivaldi is a highly customizable web browser that caters to power users. It provides extensive options for personalization, including tab management, user interface customization, and keyboard shortcuts. Vivaldi is built on the Chromium engine and supports various operating systems.
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