Understanding the Brave Browser and its Features

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Understanding the Brave Browser and its Features

https://webhostingprime.com/best-web-technologies/Web browsers have evolved, offering advanced features and functionalities. Individuals and large-scale businesses are relying on them for their success. There have been several browsers that came and went. But we are still left with the thought that “we need a new web browser with enhanced features than the previous one. Well, the “new browser” means that some developers will tweak the code for a better HTML/CSS rendering engine and fast JavaScript engine.

The industry has settled with the introduction of the Chromium engine “Blink” capable of powering Chrome, Opera, Edge, etc., except Firefox and Safari. It has gained popularity over other browsers due to its strong emphasis on privacy and safety. Then, enter the Brave browser that uses Blink.

In this article, we will discuss the features of the Brave browser. This article contains all the information you need to decide if a brave browser is for you. But before that let’s first understand why there was a need for this browser.

Rising Complexity due to Advertisement Tracking

Every browser comes with security measures to keep your data safe against a hacker’s attack. Some of the commonly implemented security measures are: support for secured HTTP connections, incognito mode searching, and sandboxing support preventing the access of one tab’s data by the other. But it is advertising where the security is highly compromised within the browser. Advertising has a significant impact on your data and website’s performance.

In short, to improve your browser’s performance and enhance security, advertising needs to be controlled and managed. For some people, it is insignificant to get advertisements regarding food packages, rock climbing, etc., but they might react to advertisements regarding technology. To cater the right ad to the right audience requires the advertisers to create a virtual profile to gather the details about the audience and understand what they like and don’t. This seems right without harming the integrity of the audience’s details. But with the high-end competition, these advertisers are more focused on getting in-depth details of the audience, leading to more invasive inquiry on the audience’s details. That is where the problem lies.

Online advertising is a considerable market. Businesses spend a lot of money placing ads about their brand and services. One of the top giants of online marketing is Google, earning billions from advertising various products. Apart from selling and offering cloud services, apps, movies, smart devices, etc. Google gets most of its income from advertising.

To make more profit from advertising, advertisers forget the ethical behavior that the consumers started to rebel against and use GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and “do not track” initiatives to clip the wings of advertisers. This leads the customers to go for complete ad-blocking, impacting most online businesses. Here comes the requirement of the Brave browser.

What is the Brave Browser?

In 2016, Brave Software introduced the Brave browser. The firm was co-founded by Brendan Eich, the creator of JavaScript and co-founder of Mozilla. It is one of the standard browsers that allow users to go through the websites and run several web-based applications while displaying online content. In the meantime, the Brave browser has gained popularity over other browsers.

The brave browser is built on top of Chromium, an open-source project by Google and maintained by others. Google uses Chromium to provide the source code to the Chrome browser. Chrome has a backend powered by a Blink rendering engine and a V8 JavaScript engine. Both the engines also power Brave. But in the case of iOS, Brave relies on WebKit, the open-source foundation powering Apple’s Safari browser. WebKit acts as the backbone of any third-party browser submitted to Apple’s App Store.

According to Brave, the browser now supports more than 25 million monthly active users (MAU) as of February 2, 2021.

Features of Brave Browser

Below are the significant features of Brave Browser that make it more powerful than other browsers available.

  • Speeds up page loading – Brave browser loads the webpages three times faster than Chrome and Firefox. This has helped several companies to improve their website’s performance and enhance user experience.
  • Easy import – You can easily import all the required settings from your older browser, and this can be done during the welcome tour or using menus. You will get the profile of your older browser within a list and use it to import the browser’s data using the menu “Import Bookmarks and Settings”.
  • Supports all your choice of websites – You can seamlessly use the Brave rewards setting to access your frequently-visited websites. Once you activate the Brave rewards option, you can easily support the content creator of your choice. You can earn the frequent flier-like token known as BAT for checking the privacy-respected ads using Brave.
  • Brave Firewall and VPN– Unlike other browsers, Brave has a firewall and VPN facility powered by Guardian, offering another level of security and privacy by encrypting the actions performed by the users. It allows you to block unwanted trackers, protect connections, protect shared information, etc. But it is a paid feature for Apple users. At the same time, they are connected to the Internet.
  • IPFS Integration – With Brave, you can leverage the benefits like integrated IPFS, allowing you to browse without the need for intermediaries. It also resolves ipfs”// URLs natively or using the gateway.
  • Extension and plugins – Brave browser comes with the support for extensions that Chrome mainly supports.
  • Online privacy – It comes with the features of ad-blocking, incognito window, and VPN to ensure secure communication over the Internet.
  • Crypto wallet – Brave browser comes with a crypto wallet ensuring security while you buy, sell, swap, and send crypto assets.

Reasons for Brave Browser’s Popularity

Below are some reasons that make Brave Browser popular among modern-world techies. Let’s explore what the genuine reasons for its popularity are.

1. Moving away from big tech

Despite many other affordable options by other small-scale companies, today, the web is dominated by the products and services from big companies. Using Brave browser will make sure that the big techs of the market do not consistently dominate the web. The primary purpose is to give equal opportunity to all the brands to display their ads. It helps in encouraging healthy competition.

2. Encourages privacy

When you go online and start browsing any website, every step is being tracked. Due to such privacy invasions, many people do not feel safe sharing their information online. But using the Brave browser, you can feel safe as it ensures a better privacy policy by not allowing to track the user’s activity. Brave encrypts all your information, such as sync data, so that you can access your browser from any device without worrying about your data being compromised.

3. Fast browsing

Chrome is less considered as it consumes a lot of resources, especially when running several things simultaneously, resulting in slow processing of each task and sometimes ending up crashing the browser. While in contrast, the Brave browser provides a faster experience to its users while allocating the resources smartly. It is claimed that Brave uses 33% less memory than Chrome, resulting in extended battery life.

4. Open-source

Unlike Chrome, Brave is an entirely open-source web browser. So, the source code is open to everyone to make the required changes to add new features and functionalities. If required, anyone can add more security to the source code.

5. Beats censorship

The Brave browser integrates IPFS protocol, allowing the users to access the decentralized web. The web is generally centralized, which means that all the resources are available at a central location to be accessed by everyone. The users can efficiently utilize a peer-to-peer network for accessing the resources using IPFS, ensuring that no one can control or restrict their access to a resource. In this way, the Brave browser beats the censorship of the web.

6. Tracker blocking

Different types of tracking technologies have been used to track users who go through the Internet. Some tracking is helpful, but some seem to be taking out most of your personal information stored within cookies or other data on various websites. But with the introduction of the Brave browser, you do not have to worry about your personal information on the Internet as it comes with a built-in privacy protection feature for blocking trackers. This feature might require the privacy-focused Chrome extension.

7. Brave rewards

The users do not block the ads from their favorite websites. But with the Brave browser, you get the chance to help your choice of website creator using brave rewards. It is up to you if you want to use them or not. But if you use the brave rewards, you will earn tokens whenever you visit a website. You can see a wallet integrated within your brave browser for storing the tokens and contributing them to your favorite website. You can also add funds to your wallet and support the publishers.

8. Tor integration

You can use the Tor network to implement an enhanced level of privacy. But, you can only leverage its benefits using the Tor browser (the easiest way). It might replace the Tor browser but works as a proxy for hiding your original IP address and location from the hackers. But using the Tor browser will not provide you with high performance while browsing the Internet. But thanks to the Brave browser, it allows you to use the Tor connectivity via a private browsing mode.

9. Firewall and VPN (iOS device)

iOS is well known for its integrated services. The Brave browser offers firewall and VPN services to its users while accessing the Internet. But for Apple users, it is an optional and paid option. But if you use the Brave browser on iOS and the VPN, it will enhance digital privacy to another level.

10. Brave search

Brave is just not a browser, and you can use it for other features such as private advertising, search, etc. The Brave browser comes with an advanced search facility that has impressed several users. It is an independent search engine focusing on privacy-friendly search results.

Advantages of Using Brave Browser

Brave Software has introduced its Chromium-based Brave browser, three times faster than Google Chrome. With its significant features of promoting and protecting the privacy and security of users and their data, this web browser has revolutionized online consumption and the way users browse through websites over the Internet.

Besides, here are some more advantages to using the Brave browser:

1. Uses the power of Chromium

Brave browser is built on top of Chromium, almost the same as the Chromium-based browsers, such as Chrome, Mozilla, and Opera. The Brave browser shows compatibility with most Chromium-based browser extensions and other web technologies available with the Chromium codebase.

2. Web tracker and naive ad blockers

Brave is majorly considered for its privacy and protecting the user’s data. Unlike other browsers, such as Chrome and Safari, it blocks the web trackers, such as cookies, and helps in removing all the digital advertisements placed here and there on every website. It prevents the advertisers from tracking the user by stripping the ads and providing a less intrusive browsing experience for every user.

3. Enhanced browsing speed and performance

Another critical aspect of the Brave browser is its unmatchable speed compared to other browsers. It is a claimed fact tested by all users using the Brave browser. All thanks to the Chromium codebase and the ad blockers, allowing users to experience high speed without any delay in loading the webpage.

4. Optimized use of hardware resources

Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox are less preferred due to their high resources consumption, such as CPU, memory, system energy, etc. Opening multiple tabs with Chrome and Firefox is challenging as it slows down the loading speed and sometimes crashes the browser while processing several requests simultaneously. In contrast, a Brave browser optimizes hardware resources and speeds up the loading process.

Disadvantages of Using Brave Browser

Despite several advantages, there are some reasons that make it challenging for some people to go for a Brave browser. Let’s have a look at those reasons.

1. Unfair to publishers and content creators

Almost every online business earns somehow from online advertising. Thus, stripping the ads from the websites will be unfair to the publishers and content creators. It means their massive income will be lost if the user uses a brave browser, as the ads will be blocked. The significant loss will be for businesses that have just started or are small-scale, whose central income depends on online marketing or advertising.

2. Specific ad-based revenue model

Another part of the Brave browser that is consistently criticized is its revenue-generating model based on online advertising. Its unique advertising model is commonly referred to as parasitic by many businesses and publishers. While Brave browser blocks the ad from some networks, it runs its unique ad network based on the user-centric rewards system. The user can earn tokens collected in the Brave browser’s wallet in this system. You can help your choice of publisher with that token and support them for their ads.

Brave browser removes the ads and their tracking and replaces them with their ads. These ads are not individually targeted but are displayed based on the user base choice. As per Brave, removing all the ads will be crucial for the commercial web to exist. Instead of removing its advertisements, it has created a cryptocurrency-based system compensating those same websites.

Brave has focused on the user’s choice to create this model that will provide the users with a fair deal they deserve while browsing. The ads on the Brave browser are displayed as notifications. Once you click them, it will open in the new tab to see the actual content.

How will Brave Browser and its Users ‘Pay’ Websites?

The economy of the Brave browser is based on the “Basic Attention Tokens” or BATs, which is a form of currency being derived from a cyber-currency. You can reward these tokens based on user attention or time spent viewing ads and content. The users of the Brave browser who accepted to receive ads will be rewarded with BATs, which are tokens. You can pass these tokens to publishers to show your support for those websites.

Brave users have been experiencing ads since April 2019 and are now receiving ads, although it is not very clear when Brave will begin to serve the requested ads to all users who opt-in or when the exchange of BATs will be ready to work.

Conclusion

Brave browser is an excellent option to choose from a security and privacy point of view. But after experiencing the Brave browser so far, it shows the consistency in performance across different platforms. Thus, it has earned a reputation among those who want to keep their data safe at any cost.

For some individuals and companies, it has shown tremendous results as expected. But on the other hand, many people are losing a significant amount of their income as their ads are getting blocked by the Brave browser. So, it is up to your business requirements if you want to use it or not as there is not much successful feedback on its performance.

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