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What is the best Mac browser?

Mark Hattersley | May 30, 2013
We pitch Apple's browser against five popular alternatives

Opera is probably the best browser if you like to download content from sites increasingly blocked in the UK. It also has an interesting range of features that ensure it's worth looking at, although we think the faster speed of Chrome, or close Mac OS X integration in Safari will swing you towards one of those choices instead.

Which is the most popular Mac browser?
What's the most popular Mac browser according to Macworld readers. In April 2013 the Top 5 Mac browsers according to our own web statistics were.

  • Safari
  • Chrome
  • Internet Explorer
  • Firefox
  • Safari iOS

It's worth noting that over 50 per cent of our readers use Safari, so it's by far the most popular choice amongst fellow Mac users. But given that Safari is the default installation, and is a good browser with a number of unique features for Apple users that is hardly a surprising figure.

Chrome in second place isn't a surprise either. Google Chrome is the world's most popular browser overall, and according to web analytics W3Schools, Google Chrome had over 50 per cent of the overall market in April 2013.

What is more surprising is that Internet Explorer pips Chrome into third place. However it is a standard installation of many office machines, so we put this down to Windows users reading about Macs (wishful thinking) or Apple fans being forced to use Windows machines in a work environment.

Alternative Mac browsers
If you fancy taking a walk off of the beaten path there are some little known web browser that offer unique features. Some of these offer a focus on specific online aspects, such as social media or web page development, so while they're not as widely popular as Safari or Chrome, they may

Changing the default browser in Mac OS X

When you install a new browser in Mac OS X it won't become the web browser by default. When you click on links in Mac OS X applications they will still open in Safari. Some browsers enable you to switch to using it as the default upon installation, but you choose between default browsers using Safari.

Open Safari, choose Safari > Preferences and select the General tab. The first menu option is 'Default Web browser' and can be used to choose your preferred browser. This will be the app that launches and opens links clicked in Mac OS X apps (Mail, Twitter, and so on).


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