Apple Safari 4.0 - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Apple Safari

CNET Editors' review

Initially met with some skepticism, the Windows version of Apple's Safari browser has developed into a strong Web-surfing candidate. Previous versions felt unfinished, but Safari 4 can stand should to shoulder with the other major Windows Web browsers--depending on what kind of experience you want.

Safari lacks most customization features. Skins and other aesthetic tweaks exist in the Mac version, but not here. Just about the only thing you can alter is the font. However, the new version represents a radical departure in look and feel, and the changes are for the better. Safari now looks much more like Google Chrome, although the tabs are placed below the navigation bar, not above it. The status bar and menu bar do exist, but they're hidden by default. You can make toolbar changes and customizations by clicking on the gear icon--another similarity to Chrome.

Both browsers are built on the open-source Webkit rendering engine, although they use different JavaScript engines. Safari's Nitro is definitely fast, although Apple's claims that it's the fastest browser on the market might depend more on your hardware than anything else. In our testing, it ran a bit slowly after heavy tab and video playback, and still consumed more RAM in general than Firefox. You can also opt out of automatic updates when you install Safari.

Features unique to Safari 4 include Cover Flow, for visually searching your history and bookmarks, and Top Sites. This presents a "speed dial"-style list of favorites on blank tabs, melded with the visual flair of Cover Flow. There's a decent built-in roboform, too. Overall, this Safari is the best one yet, and graduates from mere Windows-based developers' tool to a reasonable choice for average users.

Safari 4 for Windows and Mac:

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    3.1 stars

    out of 765 votes

    • 5 star: 199
    • 4 star: 158
    • 3 star: 128
    • 2 star: 96
    • 1 star: 184
  • Current version:

    2.8 stars

    out of 33 votes

    • 5 star: 5
    • 4 star: 8
    • 3 star: 6
    • 2 star: 4
    • 1 star: 10
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-10 of 33

  • 5.0 stars

    "Very good browser, probably not the best though."

    June 30, 2009  |   By SuperYogurt

    Version: Apple Safari 4.0

    Pros

    Great, simple, beautiful, interface (top sites, coverflow, etc). Really fast (for me at least). Secure. Has some great features (full spotlight history search!!!, smart address bar, etc)

    Cons

    Not really any customization (except for some unsupported plugins). Missing a few nice features.

    Summary

    Firefox may still be better due to its add-ons and wider range of features. But man, I keep turning to Safari just because it's blazing fast on my computer.

    Reply to this review

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  • 4.0 stars

    "A fast, organized browser with some minor cons."

    June 23, 2009  |   By Burnout_90

    Version: Apple Safari 4.0

    Pros

    Fast Browser, Nice clean layout, New nice organized "Top Sites" section.

    Cons

    No add ons, Takes up lots of memory, No tab saving feature, Needs more personalization and customization.

    Summary

    Safari 4 is a very fast and nice browser, with the nitro javascript added and the neatly organized "Top Sites" section. However, it lacks a tab saving feature which is a disappointment. In all, Safari 4 is one of the best and fastest web browser out there.

    Updated on Jun 26, 2009

    Safari 4 is a very fast and nice browser, with the nitro javascript added and the neatly organized "Top Sites" section. However, it lacks a tab saving feature which is a disappointment for many including past firefox users like myself. In all, Safari 4 is one of the best and fastest web browser out there.

    Updated on Jun 26, 2009

    Forget about the update, I screwed up there.

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  • 4.0 stars

    "Love the top site and bookmarks features."

    June 21, 2009  |   By acecommander

    Version: Apple Safari 4.0

    Pros

    Faster than Firefox, Chrome, and IE. So far seems more stable, faster response time, and easy on the eyes.

    Cons

    Needs add ons and more personalization features.

    Summary

    After using Safari 4.0 for a week or so, I made it my default browser. The download box is easier to use than the tabs that Chrome uses and the top site feature makes navigation swifter than the Firefox bookmarks.

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  • 2.0 stars

    "Just not good for Windows"

    June 20, 2009  |   By Zer0Wolf

    Version: Apple Safari 4.0

    Pros

    Nice looking interface

    Cons

    Too much of a memory hogger as compared to even IE.

    Summary

    Avoid unless you're on a Mac OS.

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  • 4.0 stars

    "Definitely the fastest browser on my system."

    June 18, 2009  |   By oregonmac

    Version: Apple Safari 4.0

    Pros

    Speed and simplicity. I've set it as my default because I think speed is the most important attribute for the applications of a default browser. I've also found it to be much more stable than the current FF.

    Cons

    I think a lot of users have come to depend on the add-ins available on FF and IE. Safari will need to incorporate add-ins if it expects to beat FF and IE for use as an overall start-page browser.

    Summary

    I have found that Safari is so much faster than Firefox and Internet Explorer on my system that I rely on it for the quick searches and downloads that make-up the majority of my internet use. You can often find my start-page open with IE8 for the clocks, calendars, mail and chat functions that I depend upon add-ins for, while I'm actively looking for something using Safari. As it goes with Windows, functionality is fine until it interferes with performance. I've always thought that operating systems, as well as browsers and big applications should be configurable to specifically meet the needs of the user alone without including all the performance munching overhead required to provide "flexibility" that will never be used.

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  • 2.0 stars

    "Not essential, optional"

    June 17, 2009  |   By Kasee

    Version: Apple Safari 4.0

    Pros

    Clean and fast browser

    Cons

    1. No addons
    2. Not open source
    3. Better Competitors
    4. No Bookmark and Password sync

    Summary

    If you cannot install firefox, you can try installing safari. Firefox gives you amazing support - dont know about safari. Nothing unique in safari.

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Don't we already know?"

    June 17, 2009  |   By sweet001

    Version: Apple Safari 4.0

    Pros

    Pros? Talk about perfection! Smooth, clean, attractive! Awesome!

    Cons

    Are you kidding?

    Summary

    Bottom line! It don't get better!

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  • 3.0 stars

    "I like it.You just need too work with."

    June 17, 2009  |   By jon1957

    Version: Apple Safari 4.0

    Pros

    It`s very easy to work with

    Cons

    It can be a bit slow at times

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  • 3.0 stars

    "Nothing "wrong", just not Firefox."

    June 17, 2009  |   By Yieeman

    Version: Apple Safari 4.0

    Pros

    Very clean design and simplistic.

    Cons

    Too simplistic.

    Summary

    I'm not a Mac user so some of this may just being unfamiliar with Mac products. But when you get accustomed to the features of Firefox and IE you tend to look for them on any new browser. I tried to get used to it over a few days but have reverted back to Firefox.

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  • 4.0 stars

    "Convenient and easy to use"

    June 17, 2009  |   By JackMaguire

    Version: Apple Safari 4.0

    Pros

    ease of use in browsing; uncluttered screen

    Cons

    no specific con, though my preferred browsers are Internet Explorer and Firefox

    Summary

    I neither like nor dislike Safari 4.0 and use it frequently. I am very happy with and would use it with contentment if it were my only browser option.

    Reply to this review

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Results 1-10 of 33

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