The web browser engines come with a collection of fundamental classes for displaying web information in a window. They provide the most basic browser capabilities, such as the ability to follow links and download and display material, by default.
You can utilize their functionality to show web content in your application at the most basic level, or you can use the web browser engine API to develop your own full-featured, customized web-based application.
We’ll go through two of the widely-used web browser engines – WebKit and Chromium.
What is WebKit?
Safari, Mail, the App Store, and many other macOS, iOS, and Linux programs employ the WebKit web browser engine. Apple’s Safari, previous versions of Google’s Chrome, and other web browsers utilize this open-source layout engine to generate web pages. Nokia, Apple, Google, and others utilize it in their devices.
WebKit is based on the KHTML rendering engine used by the Linux KDE desktop’s Konqueror browser. Apple renamed WebKit after modifying KHTML in 2002.
It is an open-source project that serves as the foundation for dozens of browsers. However, it does not include everything needed to create a graphical web browser, thus there is significant variance even among the two largest WebKit users — Google and Apple.
- A sizable community – WebKit receives a lot of support and attention since it is open source and supports so many browsers (even on mobile devices). This gives a lot of diverse feedback from a lot of different individuals in a lot of different situations.
- Widespread application – When a firm creates a website or web application, ensuring that it works with the WebKit browser instantly ensures that it will operate equally in all other WebKit browsers. Less effort is spent on resolving problems with it, and more time is spent on making it easier to use!
- There are a number of various structures to choose from – If just one major web browser utilized WebKit to display webpages, this would be less of a problem (such as Gecko). WebKit, on the other hand, is used to support a diverse set of apps, all of which are popular. It is regularly updated to fit the job at hand, resulting in a number of small differences in how each version works. Because different versions used by different web browsers, the same webpage may function differently in different WebKit browsers.
What is Chromium?
Chromium is not just the name of a browser, but also of an open-source project that produces the source code utilized by Chrome, Edge, and other browsers.
Google is the major supporter of Chromium, having started the project when it debuted Chrome in September 2008, however, because the code is open-source, others, including people who are not employed by Google, contribute to the Chromium project.
Microsoft, for example, began seriously contributing to Chromium in 2019 and often brags about the number of “commits” its developers have made to it.
Consider Chromium to be a distant relative of Chrome and Edge, one that shares DNA with the refined browsers. It is a superior platform for web developers and sophisticated users because it is free. There are also no limits on the kind of browser extensions that can be added.
Chromium is constantly changing as it is compiled from the source code of the Chromium Projects. Chrome, on the other hand, offers a plethora of release channels. The bleeding edge Canary channel, on the other hand, does not update as frequently. On the Chromium Projects website, routine updates are posted.
- It has access to Chrome’s extensions, including the Chrome Web Store, where virtually all of the extensions stored there may be installed that are used on Chromium. It is backed by Google, which aids in the development of the browser.
- The Chromium browser is the default browser for many Linux distributions, including those that do not have official repositories for simple download. It is a free browser that is open source and free of proprietary codecs. It is more widely accessible on Linux than Chrome and has virtually all of the Google features that come with Chrome.
- The Chromium browser, like Chrome, uses a lot of RAM, which might be an issue for PCs with limited RAM. It also doesn’t support certain common media formats and codecs including AAC, H.264, and MP3.
- The browser updates must be manually downloaded and installed.
Which Browser Rely on Chromium?
Some of the most popular Chromium-based browsers take their source code and add their own proprietary features and interfaces to provide a distinct user experience.
- Opera – This browser has been around for decades, and it used to be built entirely in-house. It has been using Blink, which is based on Chromium, since 2013.
- Vivaldi – A spiritual successor to Opera, it was built by a former Opera CEO to restore functionality that had been lost from that browser.
- Yandex – This is a Russian browser from the same-named search engine, although it uses the same Blink engine as Chrome, Opera, and other Chromium-based browsers.
- Brave – Brave is a free and open-source web browser created by Brave Software, Inc. Brave’s selling pitch is that it removes unwanted advertisements and stops websites from tracking user activity without the usage of any plugins. It also provides the opportunity to pay your favorite content providers instead of watching advertisements.
In terms of code and contributions, both WebKit and Chromium are active open-source projects. Each solution serves a distinct design goal. It’s fantastic when browsers compete on features that benefit consumers while without compromising web standards.
Great password managers, user security features, creative bookmarking concepts, reader modes, tidy payment API integrations, free VPNs, and so on. That was Opera’s play, and we’ve seen a slew of others in the same style since then. While Vivaldi is all about personalization, Brave is focused on privacy and security.
Chromium-based browsers are more of a framework for creating things than a finished solution with all of the functionality. You can test it out and see what works best for you. If you’re concerned about your privacy and don’t mind diving in and doing some work, Chromium might be a pleasant experience.