Hey you Firefox diehards who use may have tried Chrome or use it here and there but primarily stick with Firefox typically citing your precious addons, this one’s for you. In addition to the fundamental advantages of Chrome over Firefox you may perceive to exist already, the addon abandonment issue (known as extensions with Chrome), as I discovered this afternoon, has been quickly becoming less and less of an issue thanks to the explosive prolific developer growth and the ensuing constant enlargement of Chrome’s extension library. The kind of developer growth that puts a platform in the lead.
I don’t regularly use most of them but I have about thirty Firefox addons installed and right now 94 tabs open over six windows on four screens, and that’s after cleaning up extraneous tabs, so make no mistake that I’m as deep in the Mozilla trenches as you are. Since Chrome showed up I’ve had at least one Chrome window for every four Firefox windows as they both have things I like. I am not trying to start a browser war here, but I just want to show you that based on my experience today, for those of you who’ve been straddling between Firefox and Chrome, just want to offer you a heads up that it may be time to follow me to where I am now, and that is calling Chrome my primary browser. Those of you who are already using Chrome, the only browser that’s been steadily gaining market share, just scroll down, got some stuff for you.
This dawned on me today. There was something I’d been doing with Chrome a lot, something Android related probably, but I needed to do things I could only do with Firefox extensions and I was getting tired of switching back and forth between my monitors so I figured Hey, maybe Chrome extension counterparts to most or all of the Firefox plugins I rely on have been developed. So I started checking and that is in fact the case. It’s the case for me, which makes it possibly if not probably the case for you, unless you’re one of these IE fanatics in which case just go ahead and hit ctrl+w because this article isn’t your cup of tea – unless you’ve got some good flames to fire at me.
The extensions I already had with Chrome were Google Voice, Chrome to Phone, IE Tab, Adblock+ (don’t tell Kristofer, he’ll kick my ass). I stopped after that. My adventure today, by the way, was made possible in part by Chrome’s ability to let you install and run extensions without having to restart the damn thing. That’s nice. Another thing, Greasemonkey is built in and your Firefox scripts may work fine just like that. Haven’t tried Chrome yet? Just install IE9, it’s identical.
So here we go, a list of what I piled in so far to help me migrate, some things identical to their Firefox counterpart, a few I couldn’t find an equivalent for but really didn’t need anyway and some for which there is no Firefox addon. Here we go:
Google Mail Checker Plus – Works well with domains on Google Apps too
Google Voice (by Google) – Please don’t tell me you didn’t sign up yet
IE Tab – For those awful moments when you need to load a site that insists on IE
Super Google Reader – Simply excellent, must-have if you use Google Reader which is itself a must-have
Google reader RSS Subscriber – Stuff a good site’s RSS address right into Google Reader
Google Chrome to Phone Extension – Awesome, hit the link
android2cloud – Opposite of Chrome2Phone, equally badass
View Google Images Full – Direct-links pics in Google Image searches
Google Calendar Checker (by Google)
4chan 4chrome – Don’t ask
TinEye Reverse Image Search – For when you find a pic of a hot chick but it’s low res or you want more of her
ShowServer – Displays server name from HEAD request
Web Technology Notifier – Geo lookup of server plus pagerank and Alexa bullshit
PageMail: Send Page by Email – Highlight selection of page (or the whole thing), it stuffs it into an email
Google Webspam Report (by Google) – Help rat out the bad guys
AdBlock, AdBlock+ Element Hiding Helper, AdSweep, AdThwart
Awesome Screenshot: Capture & Annotate
Mini Google Maps
Wikipedia Companion – Mini Wiki Browser
Auto HD for YouTube
That’s just from half of an afternoon flipping around, it’s not a complete list of everything you gotta have. If you don’t already have Chrome and I’m succeeding in selling you on it, grab the stable version at google.com/chrome or go here to snatch the development builds. If you’re a Chrome man and have extensions of your own to share, any that I missed, do tell. Those who aren’t convinced, convince me why I’m wrong about this. Those you love IE and have read all the way down to this point just to flame and troll, bring it on chump.