How Apple Guarantees No Other iPhone Browser Works Faster Than Safari

Tim Cook Apple WWDC 2012

Photo: Justin Sullivan/ Getty Images

Google just released Chrome for iPod and iPad, but it’s guaranteed to be slower than Safari.That’s because the Javascript engine that runs Safari is much faster than the one that runs third-party browsers, reports BuzzFeed’s John Herrman.

The explanation involves a bunch of technical coderspeak, but it boils down to this: Apple reserves its fast browser engine, Nitro, for Safari, and sticks third-party developers with a slower one called UIWebView.

Apple says it does so for “security reasons.”

Loading Javascript isn’t all that browsers do, but these days web pages—especially mobile ones—are written heavily in Javascript. So if a browser is slow to load Javascript, it will be slow in general.

Hermann tested Chrome against Safari (warning: insanely wonky) and found that it took Chrome noticeably longer to load Javascript than Safari.

Here’s a walk-through of the new Chrome app for iOS >>

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