Researcher: Chrome Is The Slowest JavaScript Browser

It has been no secret that JavaScript benchmarks are usually very biased and fine-tuned toward the talents of the browser you would want to shine. Yet we tend to interpret JavaScript benchmark results as the often only indicator of browser performance, which currently suggests that Chrome is the fastest browser out there, even if IE9 outruns Chrome in some tests, such as Sunspider.

Last week, famous JavaScript expert Douglas Crockford published his own benchmark based on JSLint. According to Crockford, the benchmark represents real world JavaScript apps. The result: Safari 5.0.5 is the fastest JavaScript browser - and is about 3x faster than Chrome 10, which is the slowest of the bunch. Opera came in second, followed by IE10, IE9 and Firefox 4.0.1. "I think these results are more indicative of actual JavaScript engine performance than those provided by the performance-oriented benchmarks," Crockford wrote.   

Is he right? I have no idea. It may be difficult to compare the JavaScript performance in typical applications, given the diversity of applications available. Also, keep in mind that JavaScript performance may only be about 20-25% of the criteria that determines your overall browser speed. However, it is interesting that, in this particular case, it is Chrome that comes in last. I do not know any other JavaScript benchmark that would provide such a result.

Douglas Perry is an author and journalist from Portland, Oregon. His many articles have appeared in the likes of Tom's Guide, Tom's Hardware, The Oregonian, and several newspapers. He has covered topics including security, hardware, and cars, and has written five books. In his spare time, he enjoys watching The Sopranos.