Safari 3.1 Intensifies Browser Speed Wars

Claims to be quicker than both IE and Firefox.

With broadband connections these days sending web sites to our computers faster than most can process them browsers are increasingly becoming about one thing: ”Speed”.

This week sees relative small fish Safari throw its weight around with the release of v3.1. Apple claims remarkable performance increases this time around bragging of web page load times 1.9x faster than IE7 and 1.7x faster than Firefox 2. It also boasts 6x the performance of ‘other browsers’ running JavaScript and is the first browser to support CCS Animations and web fonts and video and audio tags in Multimedia HTML 5.

“Safari 3.1 for Mac and Windows is blazingly fast, easy to use and features an elegant user interface,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior VP of Worldwide Product Marketing. “And best of all, Safari supports the latest audio, video and animation standards for an industry-leading Web 2.0 experience.”

Of course Safari opponents will immediately take a dig at the browser’s stability issues (particularly on the PC) while its security has been called into question in recent months. Furthermore, with Firefox 3 just around the corner (and claiming even greater speed optimisation) and even IE8 nearing completion this certainly isn’t quite as one sided as Apple tries to make it appear.

That said, Safari has a global market share in excess of five per cent and growing while Mobile Safari is currently a portable browser without peer so credit where credit’s due.

Safari 3.1 is available immediately as a free download from the link below and on Mac’s via Apple’s Software Update application. Expect a retort for Messrs Mozilla and Microsoft any minute…


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