In the face of the slow, buggy, and downright unpleasant UI of Internet Explorer, Firefox and Google Chrome felt like a gift from the gods the first time they were released. This time around, we have a newcomer on the block: Brave Browser.
What Is Brave Browser?
Brave Browser is a privacy-focused web browser that is powered by cryptocurrency. Since the browser highly focuses on privacy, websites are blocked from tracking your information. It has an ad-blocking feature that you can enable so that you can enjoy smooth browsing without interruption.
Google Chrome, being a market leader in web browsers, has already taken on two-thirds of the global market share. Apple’s Safari dominates about 14% market share whereas Firefox holds 4% of the market share. Hence, it’s not surprising that some tech experts consider it a fool’s errand for Brave to release a new browser.
But Brave is using a tails strategy on the market. Brave said that their newly-released browser offers an experience that is separate from other web browsers due to their focus on privacy. In contrast, other browsers tend to utilize user data to advertise to their users.
Brave has 2 goals in the development of their browser:
- To help redefine people’s understanding of web browsing
- Reward people witty cryptocurrency if they watch ads
What Is Basic Attention Token (BAT)?
You heard us right. Not only does Brave let you browse the web privately, but you also have an opportunity to make some money in the process.
People receive revenue from watching ads through the form of BAT which is a cryptocurrency aka an ERC20 utility token.
Brave’s ad network was launched back in 2019 wherein users opt to watch anonymous ads to get paid with BAT afterward. The keynote here is that this feature is optional and people are free to enable the ad-blocking feature of the Brave Browser.
Now, before I get ahead, let us discuss what it’s like to use Brave for browsing. In this Brave Browser Review, we will tackle the following:
- Design and UX
- Getting Started
- Ease of Use
- How Fast Is It?
- Features, Security, and Privacy
Design and UX
If you are a Google Chrome user, you would be hard-pressed to find any difference in appearance in the Brave Browser the first time you open it up. This did not come as a coincidence. The similarity of Brave Browser with Google Chrome is due to the fact that Brave was built on top of the Chromium web browser which was what Google Chrome was based on.
From a UI standpoint, this means the transition to Brave Browser will be absolutely painless for Chrome users. And since Chrome practically represents the basic setup of the majority of web browsers, you won’t have trouble navigating Brave if you come from other browsers either.
Brave also has a dark mode which not only helps give your experience a more aesthetic effect but also protects your eyes from damage.
Getting Started With Brave Browser
Diving into the world of cat GIFs and Reddit is exciting but before all of that, it’s worth taking a few minutes to set everything up. Ultimately, this will give you a smoother and fully-featured browsing experience.
- Open Brave Browser > Select the triple-lined menu
2. Click Bookmarks > Select Import Bookmarks and Settings
3. Select the previous browser that you used (i.e. Chrome) > Click Import
And that’s basically it.
If you want to embrace Brave’s focus on privacy, I recommend that you disable the default search engine altogether and replace it with a less data-thirsty option like Duck Duck Go.
Replace Your Default Search Engine
- Go to Settings > Click Search Engine
2. Under the Search Engine dropdown, select the search engine that you want to use.
Of course, you have to remember that this step is entirely optional. But if you decide to use Google as the default search engine, you may not experience as much data protection as Brave can offer.
Ease of Use
The Brave Browser makes everything easy for the user. UI is similar to most web browsers so it’s a no-brainer for new users.
The only part about this browser that requires a bit of technical know-how is operating the adblocking and privacy protection features of the browser.
Since Brave also comes from Chromium’s DNA, it is compatible with the majority of Chrome extensions.
How Fast Is Brave Browser?
The biggest reason Brave Browser surpasses the browsing speed of Firefox and Chrome is the ad blockers.
According to the BBC, 60% of slow page loads are due to adverts and scripts that analyze what people do.
While Chrome also has an adblocking feature, it only blocks the ones that it contends with, still leaving a significant amount of ads to pop up as you browse the net and reduce your browsing speed.
In contrast, Brave Browser blocks all ads as soon as you enable the adblocking feature making way for a top-notch browsing experience in terms of speed.
Features, Security, & Privacy
Refer below to Brave Browser’s full set of features:
Brave Rewards pertain to BAT rewards that you receive when you watch ads.
What I love about this is that you’ll have the option to collect these cryptocurrencies and then send them to your favorite artists and content creators as sort of a tip.
Shields is Brave Browser’s adblocking feature that prevents your information from being tracked and further increases the speed of your browsing.
Here is an additional step-up in privacy and protection. Instead of the typical incognito mode, Brave integrates TOR into their system so that you can experience an absolutely invincible experience browsing the web.
Incognito gives you only a partial kind of invincibility. Your ISP provider, technician, or employer can still see what you are doing online. Meanwhile, with TOR, you are given genuine anonymity.
That’s it for this Brave Browser Review! The browser is very promising on the privacy grounds with lots of other cool features and I believe making a switch to it should be worth it.
Are you ready to download and use the Brave Browser?