What Google Chrome could still learn from Safari

Chrome (or Chromium) has been my default browser for about two weeks now. (I was using Chromium nightlies, with bookmark syncing and Extensions, until a few days ago when those features trickled down to dev channel builds of reg'lar old Chrome.) Also, I've noticed most of my colleagues at work — most of them hardcore open-source dudes who used Firefox on their Macs, horrible performance be damned — have also started using Chrome.

I won't belabor the point: Chrome is great, especially for developers. It's fast, the UI gets out of your way, and once you've had Google Search built into the location field (turning it into a true "command line for the web"), you'll never be able to go back. (Literally: whenever I'm back in Safari, I end up trying to type searches into the location field. Apple's probably already working on that for Safari 5.)

However, there are some things about Safari I miss:

  • MobileMe bookmark syncing with my iPhone. I don't honestly expect either Apple or Google to provide this, so this'll have to come as either an Extension or some other outside tool.

  • A top-notch bookmark manager. This is the one thing Safari has arguably gotten more right than any previous browser; its iTunes-esque bookmark management UI is great. The native manager UI in the latest Chromium builds isn't nearly adequate. Seems the most Chrome- and Google-like solution would be a web-based bookmarks UI similar to how history works. (Though, given the syncing, it would inevitably lead to some fool blog like TechCrunch to proclaim Google was coming out with a "del.icio.us killer" social bookmarking service.)

  • Consistent error messages. Why so many error styles, dudes?

  • 1Password support. Agile is working on this one as a Chrome Extension, and in the meantime I have a bookmarklet set up. But the bookmarklet can't auto-fill mailing addresses or credit card info, and there are some websites it just doesn't handle well. Native Chrome support simply can't come fast enough.

  • "Merge all windows." Never realized how much I used this command until I didn't have it anymore.