Google Chrome for Mac: First Impressions
Beta version of the browser is lacking some features and it suffers from a few hiccups. Still, it's a good start.
Google finally released the beta version of its Chrome browser for Mac on Tuesday. As expected, the new browser is lacking some features that its Windows counterpart has, such as bookmark sync, a bookmark manager, and offline capability.
I've been using the developer version of Chrome for Mac for several weeks, and have been fairly impressed with how the browser has performed. This first beta version fixes some annoying bugs that had plagued earlier versions of the browser, and overall stability is much better. However, this is still a beta version of Chrome so be prepared for a few unexpected hiccups and snags along the way.
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Here are a few observations about Google's new beta version.
No Extra Goodies
Although there have been rumors for several weeks saying Chrome for Mac would lack features like bookmark sync, I was hoping those reports would be proven wrong. Unfortunately the rumors were dead on, and all that fun stuff like Chrome extensions, bookmark sync, and offline capabilities for Google applications like Gmail and Google Docs are not available for Mac users.
Google has said that HTML 5 specifications will be replacing its offline features that currently use the Google Gears browser add-on, so offline access should be coming to Google Chrome's Mac users in the future. As for the other extras like bookmark sync and extensions, I would bet they'll be coming sooner rather than later.
Chrome for Mac allows you to import and export your bookmarks from Safari and Firefox, but the browser lacks a bookmark manager, which makes it very difficult to keep new bookmarks organized. However, there are a few tricks you can use to get at least some control over your pages.
If you want to delete a particular bookmark, you just open that Web page, and then click on 'Bookmark This Page' or press 'command + D'. This will open a small pop-up window where you can click on "remove" to erase the page from your bookmarks.
You can also use this trick to create a new folder on your bookmarks bar. When the pop-up window appears click on 'Edit' and that will take you to another window where you can create a now folder. However, every folder you create will be pinned to your bookmarks bar, you don't have the option to create a folder that appears only in the bookmarks menu.
Tip: If you don't want to see your bookmarks bar while you're browsing, open a new tab and click 'command+shift+B.' This will remove your bookmarks from the browsing window, and pin the bar to the start screen that you see when you open an empty tab.
I found that, from time to time, a new tab can get stuck and won't render the Web page you've asked for. If this happens, you can try to refresh the tab or just close the tab down and try again. In my tests, I also found that Gmail was sometimes slow to open. If that happens to you, wait until you can click on Gmail's "try reloading this page" link, and that should clear it up.
Video is good, but not great