8 Mac Browsers You May Not Know

Safari is a great web browser and works perfectly for many Mac users. Whilst there are a few popular alternatives such as Firefox, a number of less widely known browsers are also available. These range from safety conscious variations for children, through to applications targeted at research and powerful searching.

General web browsing is probably best served by one of the major players in the market, but it is fascinating to know what else is out there should the need arise. I’ll be looking at 8 niche applications, each with their own individual twist to assist with browsing the web.

Camino

Camino

Camino

Camino aims to provide the power and flexibility of Firefox, coupled with the interface style you expect from a Mac application. Camino combines the awesome visual and behavioral experience that has been central to the Macintosh philosophy with the powerful web-browsing capabilities of the Gecko rendering engine.

Price: Free
Requires: Mac OS X 10.3.9 or later
Developer: The Camino Project

Bumpercar for kids

Bumpercar for kids

Bumpercar

Bumpercar is aimed at providing a safe and secure place for children to browse the web. With content-control and customization features, BumperCar is the Mac web browser for concerned educators and parents alike. Built on Webkit, it offers a visually bright and appealing interface for kids.

Price: $29.95
Requires: Mac OS X 10.4 or later
Developer: Freeverse

Devon Agent

Devon Agent

DEVONagent

Providing a different and interesting take on browsing, DEVONagent is a full featured tool for conducing online research. With powerful search interface tools, the ability to save and repeat actions, and more than 130 plugins, it’s very much an artificially intelligent browser. Such functionality does come with a hefty price-tag.

Price: $49.95
Requires: Mac OS X 10.5 or later
Developer: Devon Technologies

Social browsing with Flock

Social browsing with Flock

Flock

Flock is heralded as the ‘social web browser’, featuring full integration with popular social media applications (MySpace, Flickr, Blogger, FaceBook, Digg, Twitter and many more). It’s built on Firefox, and aims to streamline your whole experience of the Internet.

Price: Free
Requires: Mac OS X 10.4 or later
Powered By: Mozilla

Omniweb

Omniweb

OmniWeb

OmniWeb has an unique interface with advanced features for navigating through tabs and blocking advertisements. It’s also able to save browsing sessions automatically, allow the creation of ‘workspaces’ for different browsing tasks, and handle RSS news feeds.

Price: $14.95
Requires: Mac OS X 10.4.8 or later
Developer: Omni Group

Shiira

Shiira

Shiira

Simply put, “the goal of the Shiira Project is to create a browser that is better and more useful than Safari”. No minor task! It features numerous transition effects, an Expose style tab interface, and a dynamic sidebar capable of performing different functions. Maybe not as simple and slick as Safari, but very full featured.

Price: Free
Requires: Mac OS X 10.4 or later
Developer: HMDT

iCab

iCab

iCab

iCab has 10 reasons why it differs from other browsers. My favourite features are advertising filtering, a ‘kiosk’ browsing mode (great for showing off a site to clients), download/link management and the ability to download a website as a zip file.

Price: Shareware ($25)
Requires: Mac OS X 10.4 or later
Developer: Alexander Clauss

Fluid

Fluid

Fluid

Fluid is a completely different take on a browser, creating a separate desktop application for different websites you frequent on a regular basis. It’s great to use for web applications such as Flickr, Facebook and Twitter to keep them separate from other web browsing.

Price: Free
Requires: Mac OS X 10.5 or later
Developer: Todd Ditchendorf

How do you browse?

As you can see, there’s no shortage of individual and niche browsers for the Mac. Some are certainly better than others for general use, but they’re all interesting in their own way. I use Fluid and Camino on a regular basis, along with dipping into Flock occasionally. I’m primarily a Safari fan, and never seem to stray away from the simple and effective interface for too long.

So… what do you use for browsing? Do you stick to the classic Safari like myself, or do you enjoy the bright colors and safety of Bumpercar!?