The World Needs a Productivity Browser
Seriously. The world needs a Productivity Browser.
The major browsers are not quite cutting the mustard for power users anymore. They’ve become a tool for tracking your browsing behavior, collecting information about your interests and delivering you ads, both in the browser and throughout the web.
For every ‘feature’ designed to support the revenue side of browser products, there is a risk of sacrificing usability and productivity.
We believe that’s not ok for a tool that touches so many of the tasks you do on a daily basis.
Like many technology professionals, we want to deliver high quality work, interact with our team and our customers, market our products and get stuff done as efficiently as possible. We wanted a browser that supports us in doing this. When we found out such a browser did not exist, we decided to build it on our own.
Here’s an example of how productivity sacrifices are made in major browsers and why Ghost Browser is different.
Isolated Cookie Jars in One Window
In Ghost, as an example, every tab can have an isolated cookie jar. Imagine you are developing a membership web site (or any web site with multiple account levels). You save a code change for a page that shows different content based on user level. There is custom content for each for the following:
- Logged out users.
- Logged in to a ‘free’ account.
- Logged in to a premium ‘Silver’ account.
- Logged in to a premium ‘Gold’ account.
- A site admin.
In order to see how your code changes affected the page, you have a few options.
- Open Chrome, Firefox, Opera and two other browsers to see the changes. It works, but that’s a lot of programs eating up CPU and all with different extensions installed. It also won’t let you see how each view looks in different browsers.
- Open multiple profiles in Chrome (or some other browser). Also works, but you have to keep flipping through different windows. If you have common extensions you need to do your work you have to install them every time you create a new profile.
- Log in to one, check it, log out, repeat 5 times. It works, but research shows the 4 seconds it takes to log out and log back in can TRIPLE your error rate in the next steps of whatever you are doing. Other research shows it can also increase stress and even affect your relationships at work.
None of these are good options. But we believe Ghost’s multi-session browsing in fact IS. All tabs are in one window so you can easily commit a change and see the results in each tab without a lot of context switching.
Something so powerful…but why don’t the major browsers have this as a default feature? We can only conjecture, but we do know that Google has said for years they won’t do this in Chrome. If they did and you were logged out of the browser and Gmail in your other Sessions, they would not be able to gather the data that is so critical to their ad business.
Essentially, making a great ad product (which no one can argue they’ve achieved) means that they can’t implement features that will make you more productive.
That’s why we don’t track your browsing behavior and don’t sell ads or do search deals. It gets in the way of our mission. We don’t want to sacrifice your productivity for anything…just because there is an opportunity for easy money, we want the features and business model of Ghost Browser to be aligned with one thing:
Making you more productive!
Productivity in the User Interface
Chrome is not the only browser to sacrifice productivity for something else. Download Firefox and fire it up. You get a couple of on-boarding tabs the first time.
After that you, the default setting is that every time you open it, you get not one, not two, but three places to search. Click the search box in the browser tool bar and you see a list of 6 different search engines. See…
Their product is not the browser…it’s search!
That space could be used for things that help you be more productive. More extensions. A longer URL bar so you can see complete URLs – critical for doing dev work and regular browsing.
We can speculate that there is some formula that at least some people at Mozilla know (especially since they’ve started tracking user interactions with the browser features) that say ‘If we remove one search box, revenue goes down by x. If we remove two it goes down by y.’ So, while you can alter two of these search boxes through custom settings, that’s not the default experience.
The intent here is not to slam Google or Mozilla. They’ve built great products and their browsers act exactly as they should to ensure they have great businesses. They are adequate general web browsers for the general population. But the real product here is not the browser. It’s search. It’s you and your eye balls and your mouse clicks.
The Time is Here. The Mission’s Clear.
The approach of Ghost Browser is different. We just want to be productive so we can get away from our desks and do the things we were really put on this earth to do.
So multiple Sessions per window and a sleeker interface are just the start of how we are re-thinking the web browser for technology professionals.
We hope you will join us in this journey to redefine the web browser as a productivity tool and not just another contribution to the massive data-gathering and ad-serving behemoth that technology has become. If you have ideas for how we can make your web browser more productive, please comment below or send us a feature request via our Contact page.