A new study testing the usability of the top five mobile web browsers reveals that Apple’s Safari, which comes pre-installed on all iOS devices, is the easiest to navigate. The survey was conducted by tech-support website Fixya, with results based on the number of problems filed for each browser along with additional data from NetMarketShare.
Leading the pack was Safari, with a score of 1.31 out of 2.0, though a number of users reported complaints, mostly due to its lack of Flash support. Next up was Android’s stock browser with a score of 0.87. The app comes pre-installed, and earned high marks for its easy-to-use design and speed, though users also noted that the browser would sometimes crash randomly and pointed to security concerns. Filling out the rest of the top five are Opera (0.70), Chrome (0.64) and Internet Explorer (0.28).
It makes sense to see the stock browsers from iOS and Android at the top of this list. After all, more users are already familiar with the apps, making it less likely they’ll encounter new issues worth complaining about. Still, we’re surprised that Chrome—which is really powerful and often used on iOS and Android—scored such low marks. Google’s app provides one of the best mobile Internet experiences around, especially if you’re already using the company’s other web services on your phone.
Fixya’s report points to several bugs with the browser, including font recognition and tab issues. However, Chrome’s low score is likely due to the fact that it’s a relative newcomer compared to other mobile browsers. Users are still getting acquainted with the app, which means they’re more likely to register complaints. Chrome’s ranking will likely continue to improve as Google fixes minor issues and continues to expand its mobile user base.