Firefox has been the browser of choice of technical savvy users for many years but recently more and more are switching to Google Chrome.
And there are several reasons for that, too: Chrome uses less memory, it has a better download manager and in general it just seems to work faster.
But what about the addons that make browsing with Firefox so comfortable? Google Chrome is offering extensions and apps as well – but are they as good as the Firefox ones? Let’s compare the most popular feature: blocking ads.
With almost 130 million downloads the most popular addon for Firefox is Adblock Plus. The Google Chrome Web Store even offers two adblockers, unsurprinsingly they are the two most popular Chrome extensions. They are called “AdBlock” and “Adblock Plus”. But which one of the two is better and are they a match to Adblock Plus for Firefox?
AdBlock was originally created for the Chrome browser by an independent developer. A few months ago the Adblock Plus community which is behind the Firefox version has ported their adblocker to Google Chrome as well. It is still in beta as it doesn’t have the same sophisticated user interface as the Firefox one yet. Nonetheless, in now time it became to the second most popular Chrome extension with currently more than 900k users.
Both adblock extensions for Google Chrome use the same filter lists as the Firefox version, therefore both of them reliably block all sorts of banners and other annoyances. They also both claim to be able to block video ads on youtube.com. However, blocking video ads is the biggest weakness of the Chrome adblockers compared to Firefox. They are both not able to block video ads completely as Chrome doesn’t give extensions as many rights to alter web-content as the Firefox browser does. The developers of Adblock Plus have implemented a hack as a workaround to this limitation that at least works on youtube.com. Unfortunately, is does not yet work on embedded videos or other video websites like hulu.com.
Another disadvantage is the performance: When surfing with many tabs open at the same time, AdBlock significantly slows down the browser and even causes pages to crash every now and then. Adblock Plus, which is based on the same code as the one that has been developed for many years for the Firefox version, is significantly more stable.
Surfing the internet without ads in Google Chrome has become almost as efficient as in Firefox, only video ads mostly come through due to limitations in the WebKit engine the Google Chrome browser is based on. However, Chrome Adblock Plus is already nearly as good as the Firefox version. Adblock Plus is still in beta but already a bit faster than AdBlock and more stable. Also, it handles blocking video ads on youtube.com more reliably, although not as well as the Firefox version does. Chrome Adblock Plus can be installed for free from the adblockplus.org website or here.
This is a guest post written by Anton. He is one of the editors of chrome-plugins.org, a non-profit project featuring the best extensions, addons, themes and apps for Google Chrome. Go to Chrome Plugins