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Everyone knows the “big three” web browsers– Microsoft Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, and Mozilla Firefox. However, the market is a big space with many smaller players. The big three have their names out there, but they’re not necessarily the best choice for your system. Here are a couple options for free, easy to use unknown browsers that you might not know about.
A great choice for aging computers: Polarity
Polarity is an extremely light browser that’s perfect for older or slower systems. It’s very light on resources and won’t bog down your computer while it tries to do other things.
The software has all the usual bells and whistles of the modern web browser, but it is much more lightweight and simple. It’ll run on most computers that you install it on.
It’s run by a one man show and operates off of donations, so feel free to donate if you’re feeling generous.
Another good choice for aging systems: Midori
Midori is a web browser with a focus on being light and unobtrusive. The program was developed originally for the Linux platform, but the development ported it over for Windows computers. The design is very clean and minimalist, and the memory footprint is wonderfully low. Here’s a screenshot of the Task Manager while using Midori:
Midori is only using about 250MB of the available 6GB on my computer. Google Chrome, my usual main browser, is using over double that amount–both browsers are rendering the same number of tabs.
The toolbar is designed with a very minimalist aesthetic while still allowing for a full range of features.
The browser supports the usual standard features like bookmarks (hint: MachMachines), RSS feeds, and the ability to search from the address bar. Give this browser a shot if your computer is starting to lag with age and the big browsers are becoming too bloated for your needs.
Privacy focused users: Epic Browser
We all know that it’s impossible to be completely private in a post-Snowden world. All isn’t lost– although your information is tracked somewhere, you can try to limit exactly where your data goes. Enter Epic Browser.
Epic browser includes a ton of privacy-friendly features that allow you to have some control over who is looking at your browsing data. The browser has an ad and tracker-blocker built into the software to prevent these services from tracking your online habits.
The software runs off the Chromium web engine, so it looks very similar to Google Chrome. Epic Browser runs without any of Google’s services baked in, and they recommend you avoid logging into any Google services if you want to keep your data from being tracked while using the browser.
The software automatically blocks tracking cookies and includes a built-in proxy in order to mask your IP address for extra privacy. The browser also doesn’t store any data about previous sessions in order to keep companies from tracking your identity. In a way, Epic Browser is “private mode” or “incognito mode” with additional data security features. Give it a shot if you’re worried about what companies like Google and Facebook are doing with your data.
Best All-in-one browser: Torch
Most browsers come in with a barebones selection of features, and some people enjoy this vanilla experience. Others decide to modify the browser with extensions and ad-ons to expand what the browser’s capabilities. Torch Browser tries to come out swinging with a diverse toolkit.
The browser runs off Chromium but provides many interesting features out of the gate. Torch Music is a spotify-esque music player built right in to the browser. Torrent users can download and stream their torrents without leaving the browser.
Torch is great for users who don’t want to worry about browser extensions, and just want something fun and useful right out of the box.
These are a few of the best unknown browsers for your Windows computer. Hopefully one of these is a better choice for you if you’re unhappy with the big three. Let us know if we missed any good options in the comments below!
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