Four Mac OS X browsers that give Apple’s Safari a run for its money

“Web browsers abound for Mac OS X, but their differences have become harder to discern. Before Safari appeared on the scene in January 2003, several browsers contended with the slow-rendering Microsoft Internet Explorer,” Glenn Fleishman writes for The Seattle Times. “In November 2002, I rounded up several browsers that had their strong points as alternatives to IE; a couple of months later, Apple’s introduction of its free Safari browser pounded the nails into IE’s coffin, and, I would have guessed, pushed competing browsers into the dustbin of history.”

Fleishman writes, “But there’s a lot of room in the browser space because Safari remains idiosyncratic: It’s Apple’s specific idea of what needs to be in a browser and how a browser should work. Apple didn’t throw in the kitchen sink, and occasionally one feels the need to wash up dishes. Four other browsers are worth contemplating, especially as three make their way from beta to release in the next few weeks to months: Camino 0.8b, Mozilla 1.7RC2 (release candidate), OmniWeb 5 (beta 6.1) and Opera 7.5 (release version).”

Fleishman writes, “Mac OS X browsers have matured to the point that you might have no reason to switch from Safari. But if you’re looking for a specific reason to change, you can’t go wrong with any of these four.”

Full article here.


  1. For me, Safari has some quirks that really bug me and it is not the fastest horse in the race. Just go to and watch Safari load & reload the java graphics.. forever. Camino works perfectly and is faster. Do I miss the flashback feature? Yup. But I like Camino’s speed better.

    Panther 10.3.4 Java 1.4.2 iMac 1.25GHz 17″

  2. Safari is great – but, here is a weird problem I have with it:

    I have a wireless network at home, and instead of using a Airport card for my iBook, I’m trying a D-Link USB Wireless adapter. (Which does say is compatible with Mac OSX) When I am wireless, Safari freezes up after a few websites, but IE and Mozilla don’t. I know if I had a Airport card, this probably wouldn’t happen, but it does seem like another incompatibility issue with Safari.

  3. ” Shiira is my current browser of choice, its from a Japanese developer and is based on Apple’s Web Core foundation. It’s really fast, I love Safari but in terms of speed Shiira has the edge. If you have an older Mac this is a good choice, it doesn’t use much resources and did mention “

    Just downloaded it.


  4. Firefox gets my nod over safari… handed tabbing, and it shows web addresses of any link that the cursor is placed over. It also handles my yahoo email notably faster.
    I have noted a (very) few website incompatiblities.
    I just wish I could put in into apllications (with my other browsers), rather than have it co-equal with the hard drive in the Finder.
    PS I had a M$ owning friend download Firefox…he loves it too.


  5. There is one browser for the Mac that I’ve seen recently on a mac at a local business that had thumbnailed page images in a drawer to the left side of the main screen, but for the life of me I can’t remember which browser it was – someone told me it was based on Safari, but going to each of these browser’s websites didn’t get me a screenshot of what it was I had seen – anyone have any ideas?

  6. “I just wish I could put in into apllications (with my other browsers), rather than have it co-equal with the hard drive in the Finder.”

    Huh? Firefox is in my Applications folder and works just fine. Firefox is pretty good, and for that matter, so is Mozilla. And I liek the ability to implement toolkits inside both of them, like the Bloglines tool, but I do not like the tab implementation in either Firefox or Mozilla. I still use Camino on occasion; it seems to work better with some sloppy Javascript. I am a paid Omniweb and Opera user. Omniweb is pretty, and its workspace feature is great. Opera still seems slow to me, and it has some weird keystroke combinations. Once in a while, I’ll fire up IE just to check a site. Just downloaded Shira, and I am impressed. The reality is that Safari itself is what provided the competitive spur to all this new product development. Many people worried that Safari would smother competition the opposite has proved true.

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