During the days leading up to the release of Google Chrome, I kept thinking... Oh, No, what's going to happen to Mozilla and Firefox. But after having test driven Chrome for about 2 weeks, I can say for certain that no serious Firefox user will give it up just yet. Google has it's work cut out if it wants to win this war.
With my aging computer, I was barely able to keep 5-6 tabs open using Chrome. With Firefox, I usually have two windows (one for Gmail, Facebook, etc and another one for whatever I am researching) Both windows usually have 6+ tabs open at any given time. Trying to multi-task with Chrome running was a nightmare. Because each tab is a separate process, the browser uses up 100% (or close enough) of my CPU cycles to keep itself alive.
Here is an example - If I go to Flickr, and CTRL + CLICK a few pictures from someones' galleries, Chrome hogs up the CPU trying to download and render each image. Firefox on the other hand does a great job of this, while still allowing me to surf the web on other tabs.
Plugins - A feature the Chrome team will have to urgently work on, otherwise it's adoption will be extremely slow...at least in the techie community, who is Firefox bound.
Privacy mode - I could care less about this feature, I mainly check my mail on my home computer and work laptop, and I religiously log out of every website I visit. I don't need a browser to do that clean up for me.
Memory Foot Print - It does have a smaller footprint than Firefox with the exact same tabs open, but with 2GB or ram, I don't find that to be the problem. My main problem again, is the 1.6GHZ Athlon processor, and Chrome can't use up 100% of it all the time.
Tabs as Processes - That is a brilliant idea, and really putting multi-threading to the test. A computer with a dual core processor will give you great performance. The thought process behind tabs as separate processes was that if one tab crashed, it wouldn't take the whole browser with you, but if one tab hogs up all my CPU cycles, I can't close it so that's just as bad as the browser crashing.
Plugins - I just had to re-iterate this one...
How has your experience been?