Don’t ditch Safari if you want the fastest browsing experience


Safari is faster than ever in macOS High Sierra.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

If you want the fastest possible web browsing experience on Mac, don’t sway from Safari.

Apple promises that Safari 11, which will debut in macOS High Sierra this fall, is “the world’s fastest desktop browser.” And tests show that it does not disappoint.

According to the latest statistics from W3Counter, Safari is currently the world’s second-most popular desktop browser, with a 13.5 percent share of the market. However, Google Chrome eclipses it with a whopping 62.4 percent share.

If you’re one of those Chrome users, it might be time to consider switching for macOS High Sierra. Even in beta form, Safari 11 outpaces every single one of its rivals — including Chrome, Firefox, and Opera — in a series of benchmark tests.

Macworld put it through its paces in eight benchmark tests, measuring things like speed, graphics performance, and JavaScript and HTML5 processing, to see if Apple’s promise really holds up. In all bar one, Safari proved faster than the competition.

In Ares-6, which uses a series of JavaScript tests, Safari was almost twice as fast as Opera, its closest competition. It also beat Opera, Chrome, and Firefox in JetStream, Kraken, and Octane, which also measure JavaScript performance.

Safari 11 Ares-6
Safari is significantly faster than the competition in Ares-6.
Photo: Macworld

Safari also came out top in MotionMark, which tests animation performance, and Speedometer, which measures the performance of “user interactions in web applications.” The only test Safari didn’t win is WebXPRT, which measures HTML5 performance, in which it came second.

So, there you have it, Safari 11 really is the world’s fastest desktop browser. And we expect performance to be even greater when Apple irons out the kinks and makes it available to the public in macOS High Sierra later this year.

  • bIg hIlL

    ARES-6 gave 58.41 for SRWare Iron Version 58.0.3050.0 (based on Chrome) on macOS 10.9.5,
    Safari 9.1.3 won’t run ARES-6, Opera 46.0 65.62 and Vivaldi 1.11.894.3 81.93. Motionmark results: Iron 272.10, Safari 273.87, Opera 283.90 and Vivaldi 276.05. Speedometer results: Iron 60.4, Safari 92.2 Opera 70.04 and Vivaldi 73.33. JetStream results: Iron 153.70, Safari FAILED, Opera 133.53, Vivaldi 135.26.

    Iron best on Ares-6 and Speedometer, Opera best on Motionmark and Jetstream. Safari failed on 2/4 tests.

  • Thomas DM

    […] Safari is currently the world’s second-most popular desktop browser.

    I think that’s second-most popular on all platforms, not desktop only. Safari on macOS has a very limited market share when it comes to desktop browsers – around 4%.