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Google says Chrome is now 20% faster on Macs

If you feel like Google Chrome is running faster on your Mac, then you’re not mistaken. Google recently shared some new statistics behind the web browser, and is claiming that Chrome is now 20% faster on Macs based on the Speedometer benchmark testing.

According to Google’s data, Chrome on Mac hit over 360 on Speedometer testing. That comes just three months after the browser became the highest scoring browser on Speedometer, ever with a score of 300. For reference, Goggle tested Chrome on the M1 Max MacBook Pro running macOS 12.3.1, with Chrome version 104.0.5102.0. The browser was the ARM64 native optimized version. The below graph shows the differences between older and newer Chrome versions in scoring, where higher scores are better.

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Chrome's performance over generations.

To make sure Chrome is always on top of these benchmarks, Google also uses its own internal benchmarking infrastructure. Yet, Speedometer 2.0 is the most representative of real-world browsing. It runs a cycle of various common tests and web applications to simulate user actions such as adding to-do items.

The test also ensures that the results are accurate by timing simulated user interactions and runs commonly used browser frameworks used on the most popular websites in the world. Per Google, Speedometer is also the best test for measuring a browser’s JavaScript performance.

How did Google get that score? Well, it comes down to several tweaks under the hood of Chrome. Fastlookups, fast parsing, faster JS calls, pointer compression, short builtins, and Sparkplug are just a few examples. Google says that all of these tweaks have led to an 83% improvement in Speedometer score. The performance benefits of the M1 CPU, as well as browser engine features like Sparkplug and LTO+PGO are other factors too, per the company.

“We are excited to achieve this milestone in performance and look forward to delivering even more performance improvements with each release,” said Google in announcing the milestone back in March.

Microsoft’s own web browser, Edge, is also based on the same Chromium engine as Google Chrome. In our tests, it scores around 218, though we’ve used a base model M1 Mac Mini, and not the same hardware as Google in their tests.

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