For a couple of days last week, I decided to try using Chrome as my browser, to see how it was. I’m using a build of Chromium on linux (my mac doesn’t have leopard, so I can’t run Chrome). I typically run the latest full release of firefox on my desktop, and the latest beta of firefox 3.5 on my laptop. Anyway, Chrome performed well. Complex pages (Gmail, Google Wave, and a bunch of OCR analysis pages I use) felt more responsive than in firefox on the same machine. The browser crashed once, but recovered gracefully. At one point, the gmail tab I had open stopped responding to my key presses. Chrome popped up a window saying that the page was unresponsive and gave me the option of closing it down. I waited and the tab recovered without intervention. It was cool that this was caught, though it really shouldn’t be happening in the first place. It’s still prerelease software, so it’s OK if that happens.
My main problem with Chrome is the same thing that bothered me when I first tried it out on Windows: the address bar. It just doesn’t rank things the way I expect and it’s harder to visually scan than the firefox awesomebar (which I thought was somewhat hard to scan to begin with, but improved a lot since the first time it was in beta). It also makes it somewhat tricky to go to websites that look like http://somehostname/ (without .com, common for intranet URLs).