Last week Google finally released Chrome for the Mac in Beta form. I’ve now been using Chrome as my primary browser for several days and I’ve decided to write down all of the things I like about Chrome so far:

– The page loading indicator actually moves more slowly when your connection is slow. This is helpful because it lets you know the connection isn’t stalled, it’s just slow. It’s also directional, spinning one way for outgoing and the other for incoming. Clever and simple.

– The status bar floats above the page in the lower left corner, only visible when it is needed. Other browsers require you to show a status bar at all times and turning off the bar means you don’t see any status.

– The full URL is visible in the status area when you mouse over of a link. This makes clicking on links safer at times when you might be suspicious.

– Nice use of animation when closing or moving tabs. Why isn’t Apple doing this with Safari?

– Resolves (and probably other’s) URLs instantly as if I actually entered the full URL.

– Address bar works like Quicksilver for Mac. It remembers where you visit most often, so just a couple characters brings up the site you want. Of course, Google also knows which sites are most popular in general and is able to predict where you want to go. Even better, it learns from your behavior (again, like Quicksilver). When it’s not sure where you want to go, the first auto-fill option is a Google search. Once it learns that typing ‘am’ means you want, that becomes the first choice, saving you one more click/keystroke.

– Bookmarks are history (pun intended). Thanks to that smart address bar, there really isn’t as much need for bookmarks. At a minimum it makes needing the bookmark toolbar pretty obsolete, hence saving you vertical space.

– Incognito mode is very obvious. You know you’re in it because the color scheme changes and a little guy who looks like a flasher appears in the upper right. Not so sure I would have chosen the flasher iconography, but it is distinct. They also have a nice description of what incognito mode is and what it won’t protect you from.