Apple Safari 3 Beta, now available for Windows

Isn't it ironic? At the end of 2005, Microsoft decides to discontinue Internet Explorer for Mac support and now in mid-2007, Apple Incorporated decides Safari is coming to Windows. Safari will join iTunes and QuickTime as the third Macintosh application officially ported to the Windows platform. At Apple's World Wide Developers Conference in San Francisco today, the company announced the availability of the Safari 3 beta for OS X, Windows XP and Windows Vista.

Some of our users are testing the browser with absolutely no problems while others are finding bugs that range from install failures and crashing to incorrect web site rendering and ridiculous memory usage. Safari 3 will most likely go final in time for Leopard's release in October of this year. Apple is touting Safari as being able to load pages roughly twice as fast as Internet Explorer and 42% faster than Firefox. Is Apple pulling typical marketing antics or are the numbers dead on? You be the judge.

This is BETA software!, please use caution when installing it on your system
Download: Safari 3 Beta
Link: Forum Discussion (Thanks Gaius)

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Why do they call it the "best" browser when it isn't? I even prefer IE over this. It can't even render valid sites. Also mess up stuff that either IE, Opera or Firefox never do. *uninstalls*

yea no proxy support currently-but for beta-ware what is to be expected, that had to have a working safari on windows to get more applause at WWDC. In all fairness though, Mac is getting it right and for once has the better product all the way around when it comes to OSX Leopard. I've been a windowinian for ever simply due to cost and lack of compelling products for the Mac. But Mac seems to be leaving the image of "We only care about Macheads and digital content developers." Also noteworthy-OSX Leopard is rumored to be priced around 130.00USD when it debut's. And Vista is how much across 10 flavors? Home Basic 32bit is the only realistically priced version but as you all know is capable of surfing and office functions only. Moral of the story? I'm switching to Mac when Leopard hits.

Just installed.

Initial impressions: Renders fine till now, feels fast.

Complaints: text too antialiased, very little customizability (I want the tab bar to be always open), UI font color should be lighter than background, makes a bit hard to read.

I'm a little surprised to see all the problems related to Windows. Works like a charm on my OS X though, gotta love the search feature.

Played with it for ten or twenty minutes. Faster then IE 7, on my fast machine? A little. Faster then my optimized build of Firefox? Not really.

Other then its advertised speed, I personally really don't see a need for it. I'm perfectly happy with Firefox, which offers a lot more functionality then this. Not only extensions, but themes as well. The bright blue scrollbars and elements are pretty ugly here on Windows, and the rest of the theme aint so great either. Firefox gives me more control over cookies then this, I prefer to make everything except certain sites a session cookie to be auto dumped on close. It scrolls really slowly for some reason. I can have any search engines I want in the search box in Firefox and not only Google and Yahoo. What else, uh, couple more things I can't think of now. Overall, not bad, but no Firefox thats for sure.

YUCK! Looks like quicktime with mac OS scrollbars! Also seems to have lots of hints of Firefox in it. Seems speedy, but scrolls pages with images a lot worse than Firefox does for me (especially when run remotely through RDC). In the end, unless safari gets extensions, it's a pretty much a useless browser (I can never use a browser that doesn't have adblock functionality again! lol) x)

Memory use on my system right now as I'm typing this is 2,700k. Nowhere near what others are reporting.

The only things I'm noticing that bug me are how slow the interface can be at times and it's nowhere near 2 times faster than Internet Explorer 7 on my system. On my system, IE 7 is faster than Firefox, Opera and now Safari (I'm keeping in mind they're final and this is "beta").

Besides the above it's alright, but nothing to brag about.

EDIT: Yahoo renders all kinds of crazy right now

Sweet speed... RIDICULOUS memory use - 180MB with only 5 tabs open and ~10 mins usage. Firefox barely cracks 150mb after hours of use. They need to fix that b4 they come out of beta. But the speed increase is noticeable. Probably doing some heavy caching or something.

I'm also not liking the death-grey color scheme. Where's the eye-candy Apple!

AND - I can't watch the WWDC keynote for whatever reason in Safari (or any other browser for that matter)!

lol it's seems to be alright though take a bit getting use to different font rendering (too lazy to change)

safari: Time to render page: 0.68871 sec / Used 5 queries

Firefox: Time to render page: 0.39732 sec / Used 7 queries

So far, this is certainly a lot like iTunes...slow and bloated. Don't get me wrong, I like the iTunes store and business model, but the program itself sucks. This beta doesn't like proxy start up Safari, it asks for your credentials, I type them in, and it crashes. That's how my experience went...hope it improves.

No problems with fonts, text, rendering, speed, buttons, typing or any of the other problems mentioned. What do you people do to your computers?
Can't open new tabs from bookmarks, address bar or search, cpu jumps about a bit and could use some skins, otherwise very nice browser.

>>> What do you do people do to your computers?

Note that most of the people having problems are running Vista. There seems to be a serious rendering issue around fonts in the Safari beta on Windows Vista where on certain systems whatever the default font Safari is trying to use either does not get installed correctly or it won't render on certain display drivers, etc. Hence you end up with no menus, no fonts in dialogs, no text on buttons, and no text other than text in graphics on any webpage.

Enough people are reporting the problem that it definitely a problem with Safara and not user's computers.

Works really well and fast for me: WinXP SP2 + All Patches. Some usability bugs and text is too antialiased for my taste.

Ugly as hell on Windows. How about a native UI, Apple?

Uninstalled, but should be good enough for testing web code without draggin my MacBook to work.

Worst beta I've ever tried!

On my Vista system the pages load fast alright... probably because not one website displays any text! Neither do the menus, dialog boxes, or any control. Just a big gray window that shows empty boxes as you move the mouse around.

On my XP notebook which has an extremely high resolution display, the font used for menus in usual Apple fashion is not the one specified in my display settings but their choice which is completely unreadable. 1-2 millimeters tall at best. It looks like about 3 pt text.

15 minutes later it was gone from both systems. Apple has to do a lot better than this.

it runs fine on my vista machine but i see ie7 actually load a few pages a bit faster. One thing i did notice is that it does use a lot of memory( i not complaing about it just making an observation). i will wait till the final version to be released.

I dunno why people are having so much problems with it. I installed it onto my Vista machine, and its been running great. No crashes no matter what I do. It does seem to be loading pages faster than my Firefox, and i haven't noticed any major rendering issues.. Overall a *thumbs up* from me.

I feel like it's quite a bit slower, but i'm not using an application to actually test speeds. I also found it interesting that they did their benchmarks in XP and not on a Vista machine, IE7 works best on vista in my opinion, I wonder how much different their benchmarks would be on a Vista machine.

I haven't had any major issues yet like others have, but already I don't picture myself switching to it, as a web dev. it will be nice for testing but beyond that I'll stick with my IE and FF. One thing that has been annoying is that it will duplicate letters as I type them,, super annoying.

If they blended it into the Vista Windows (Aero) I'd be happier as well, I just can't stand that Silver Metal look, at least they did away with the "Brushed metal"

I"ll be interested to see how the hackers play with Safari now that it is on windows, I expect to be seeing many more security related notices over the next few months in regard to Safari.

even though it is a beta, I sure as hell did not see the speed increase with safari that Jobs claimed. Firefox is much quicker all around and doesnt consumer 200+MB with only one page open.

Why can't they give us Vista drop-shadows and max/min animations on their apple apps. QT/iTunes/Safari all don't support them

Co_Co said,
Why can't they give us Vista drop-shadows and max/min animations on their apple apps. QT/iTunes/Safari all don't support them :(

It's a bit weird that developers should be the ones supporting them in the first place. On Mac OS X all native windows are "forced" to use animations like the minimizing effect and drop shadow. What's going on inside the window itself is a different story though.

forcing drop shadows would be really bad for apps that use freeeform skinds or other gUI features that aren't compatible with them.

if you hve a Winamp skin with a nice freeform skin and it's own added drop shadow, it would be wair having a OS generated drop shadow around the "virtual" frame of the player. Sometimes forcing your rules on everyone isn't a good idea. actually, generally it isn't. And it's not like adding drop shadow and animation's isn't as simple as adding or removing a flag from the application in the first place. But then again Apple hires the worst developers in the world to make their Windows ports.

This will go nicely with my Mac OSX skin. :)

Edit: After the install I have the same problems as metal_dragen & jugalator.

I was not able to type anything into the address bar, and none of the menus displayed text. It looks interesting, but highly unusable at the moment.

Same as jugalator here - when it first opens (which is surprisingly fast), text is missing all over web sites, and even from the program's interface itself. It didn't crash on me, but I was not able to type anything into the address bar or navigate to any other sites.

I'll give it another shot once it's a bit more polished.

black_death said,
I suppose Apple's next step is to claim they can make a better broswer than Opera and Mozilla?

On Mac OS X Safari certainly is. In my opinion anyway.

hey apple, how about you stop forcing your interface into other os's and use the system's native interface and theme... microsoft doesn't do it to you in osx with office, why do you do it on windows, it looks horrible and out of place!

So do a lot of 3rd party Windows applications.

Even Microsoft doesn't really bother to make everything fit in with Vista 1:1; Microsoft Office 2007 and Windows Live Messenger more or less try to emulate Aero, but the difference is quite obvious compared to the real thing. Granted the difference isn't as big as with iTunes, QuickTime and Safari.

.Neo said,
So do a lot of 3rd party Windows applications.

Even Microsoft doesn't really bother to make everything fit in with Vista 1:1; Microsoft Office 2007 and Windows Live Messenger more or less try to emulate Aero, but the difference is quite obvious compared to the real thing. Granted the difference isn't as big as with iTunes, QuickTime and Safari.

Oh please, UI doesn't just include graphics. At least Office 2007 and WLM act as you think they would. Safari is too far out to put on a Windows machine. I get no tool tips, no middle click, no right-click when it matters, things in weird places, the list goes on.

OK, I'm not expert at UI, but one of my focuses at university is in it and this whole app should go on a slide titled "Bad User Interfaces." Accessibility is poor, I mean a guy with bad vision will probably fail to read any text on the tool bar thanks to the gray on gray. And if they bother to open the status bar, they'll fail (and even myself with corrective lenses) to read what is on it because of the small fonts combined with the gray on gray text.

Cripes, Apple is touted as being the best at UI yet this fails on so many levels.

I don't mind having the option to use the special UI, but I detest being forced into it as it always slows down the machine, particularly if it's not particularly new and therefore not super whizzy.

cf iTunes, Sony's SonicStage et al

Wow, tried it now, and...

+ After it has loaded, it looks surprisingly fast for being an Apple port for Windows. Looks easily on par with the competition to me.
- Tons of rendering bugs! All sites I visit have heaps of invisible text. Neowin, a test Google search, ...
- Ate about 100 MB pretty much just by starting it.

Hopefully the downsides will be sorted in time. I'll excuse it for being a beta, but the lots of rendering bugs, even for a public alpha, didn't exactly surprise me positively. The upside is that they all seem to share a common denominator though. Almost like some sort of text encoding thing... But it's happening with a standard Western character set, on completely normal web sites.