Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Flocking Back to Chrome

FlockThis is the last post I will be making here from Flock, "The Award Winning Social Web Browser Powered by Mozilla." I committed late last week to giving it a test drive, and my plan was to give it a week before drawing any final conclusion. Well, it has been almost a week. Finally.

Let me say a few things about Flock. First, it is a very powerful web browser, certainly. It is absolutely loaded with features. I mean, it's packed so full of social media features that -- well, for me, that's part of the problem. It's overloaded.

I was a long time supporter and promoter of Firefox when Google rolled out their Chrome browser. I tested out Chrome for a while and found it lacking in some areas, bouncing back and forth between Firefox and Chrome for the longest time before finally settling on Chrome (I don't even think I wrote about that decision here) for it's superior speed, streamlined look, and ease of use.

It is for those same reasons that I simply cannot even begin to feel comfortable with Flock. I have been using it exclusively for several days now, and I have found no need to set up the many social media features it includes. In fact, I have found that taking the time necessary to set up such features is something I just don't, well, have time for.

In addition, Flock has on two occasions over the past several days frozen on me and required a restart -- something that has never happened with Chrome, thanks to Chrome's built-in Task Manager with Crash Control, which works beautifully any time a web page freezes up. In Chrome, it's as simple as opening Chrome's Task Manager and disabling the offending web page. No browser restart required.

Another shortcoming I have discovered with Flock is that it doesn't seem to adequately leave me logged in to sites I visit frequently, as both Chrome and Firefox seem to do. That, to me, is an annoyance, and it seems that a social media browser would be designed to keep one logged into social networking sites to provide easy access to those frequently used.

Overall, I would say that if I was still using Firefox primarily, I might be tempted to keep plowing along with Flock and might even some day switch over permanently. Flock and Firefox are both based on the Mozilla platform, and I think Flock can best be described as Firefox for social networkers. However, I only use Firefox as an occasional backup, and there are times when I will go for weeks without even using it at all.

TweetdeckSince I began using Tweetdeck for Twitter at about the same time I began my test drive with Flock, I find that Tweetdeck so fully meets my Twittering needs that there is no use (for me) for the social web features of Flock.

ChromeFor me, Chrome and Tweetdeck fit the bill, with no added lag to my system, none of the clutter that is so nicely featured in Flock, and none of the browser crashing that requires frequent restarts.

Im sure Flock is exactly what some people are looking for. For me, I prefer the simplicity and reliability of the Chrome browser.

My other posts on Flock are available here and here.

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