Google’s open development platform, Chromium, is what built the behemoth known as Google Chrome today. In this Chromium review, we’re going to go back to basics and see how good the core browser really is.

Chromium was launched in 2008 alongside Google Chrome. It’s an open-source software that serves as the base for Chrome and several other browsers, such as Opera, Vivaldi and Brave. This Chromium review will let you know how it compares to other browsers on the market.

Though Chromium can be used as a regular browser, it primarily exists to allow developers to test upcoming versions of Chrome or build their own web browser using the basic structure of Chromium. 

Chromium is a fast browser that can use the vast library of extensions made for Google Chrome, but it suffers from high RAM consumption, a lack of automatic updates and privacy concerns.

On desktop, Chromium is available on Windows 7 and later, macOS X 10.10 and later and Linux. Compatibility on mobile is more limited, as the browser is only available on Android 4.4 and later and not at all on iOS. For our testing in this review, we used a Windows 10 laptop and a Nexus 5X running Android 8.1.

For the most part Chromium’s features are identical to Chrome’s . There are a few exceptions, though. You can sign in to your Google account on mobile and desktop to sync your settings, history, bookmarks and stored logins. Because it uses the same account infrastructure as Chrome, all that data is synced across both browsers.

That means you can sync everything between your Android and desktop devices, as well as back everything up on Google’s cloud.

Chromium also lets you import and export your bookmarks as a standard .html file. That works the same way it does in Chrome.

Chromium Features on Desktop

Chromium has the same library of extensions as Chrome. The huge number of extensions means you can add almost any feature you’re missing to the browser, from ad blockers to deeper integration with social media platforms. If it’s possible to do in a browser, there’s probably an extension for Chromium that does it.

There’s built-in support for Google Translate, which enables you to translate any website in a foreign language with just two clicks.

As for Chromium vs. Chrome, a few of the latter’s features are missing in Chromium. There are no licensed codecs for media files, such as .aac, .h264 and .mp3, so if you want to use the browser to stream Netflix, you’ll have to manually install them separately. There’s no support for Adobe Flash, either, which isn’t as big a deal as it would’ve been 10 years ago, but it can be a problem.

On the flipside, Chromium allows you to use extensions that don’t come from the Google Web Store, which you’re otherwise locked into when using Chrome.

On the flipside, Chromium allows you to use extensions that don’t come from the Google Web Store, which you’re otherwise locked into when using Chrome.

Though the context menu option to Google selected text has become standard in most web browsers, Chromium also gives you the option to instantly do a reverse search on an image by right-clicking it and selecting “search Google for image”.

Chromium is very easy to install on any Ubuntu Flavor. To see how to install Chromium on your system just head to our Installation Guide page for Chromium.