Brave browser is one of the most unique web browsers available today. It is based on the Chromium rendering engine, therefore, you should expect similar performance when compared to Google Chrome and other browsers based on the same engine. Now, one of the best things about Brave is the privacy-focused features it brings to the table. At the moment, at least from our point of view, Brave is among the best browser if you value your privacy on the web. This was a title once held by Firefox, but things have changed a lot over the 6-years Brave has been on the market.
Because of its focus on privacy, the Brave web browser does not make money by collecting user data. It relies on aggregate user data whenever it wants to collect data, something that works quite well. Outside of being great for the privacy-minded folks, Brave, unlike other web browsers, comes packed with some key features. Usually, with competing programs, the user would have to install extensions, but that is not the case here. For example, if you want HTTPS Everywhere, then Brave has it locked. The same goes for its ability to block social media trackers and the cool cryptocurrency wallet.
Review of Brave browser for Windows PC
Features of Brave browser
Those of us who have been using web browsers for decades will remember Opera before the developers switched the rendering engine to Chromium. It had a lot of features that did not require the installation of extensions, and you know what? Brave is similar in that respect.
Still, the folks behind Brave are more inclined to focus on privacy in most cases, and that’s not a bad thing at all.
The PDF Reader
OK, so there is nothing new regarding the PDF reader found in Brave when compared to Chrome. It’s the same thing, but what is most important here is that it works. No additional features, no bells, and whistles. Just a typical PDF reader that does what it sets out to do.
Brave synchronizes data in a unique way. You see, instead of saving data such as bookmarks, passwords, or history in the cloud, everything is stored on the device. Therefore, when syncing with other devices, the user must use a provided QR code and then save a special password to ensure access.
If this password is lost, then all data goes with it, so the user must store it in a safe space. We suggest using Microsoft OneDrive for this.
When it comes down to search engines, most web browsers have Google Search as the default option. But we expect a change here due to the rise of DuckDuckGo, and fairly recently, Brave Search.
So far, Brave uses its own search engine as the default option, and there’s nothing wrong with that because it is competent enough. It also gives the option to switch to Google Search, Bing, or Mojeek.
Chrome Web Store for extensions
If you want to download extensions to improve the functionality of Brave, then it is best if you use the Chrome Web Store. It contains everything you need, but we wager Brave itself doesn’t require much of anything else. And since adding extensions can increase the CPU usage of the browser, we believe users should think twice.
Brave Rewards and Basic Attention Token (BAT)
These right here are the features that truly sets Brave apart from other web browsers. The ability to earn rewards via a cryptocurrency token known as BAT. When you browse the web, BAT is earned, which can then be converted to USD for future withdrawals.
Brave came up with BAT, which is based on Ethereum, to fight the current state of online advertising. Basically, the folks at Brave provide advertisements for the user without messing around with their privacy. Each time the user clicks on an ad they will earn a certain amount of BAT, and we can say for 100 percent certainty that it is real.
Now, when you make money, it is possible to share some of that profit with the websites you visit automatically. Or you can take it all for yourself and run off into the sunset.
Read: Brave browser not loading pages on PC.
Brave Crypto Wallet
In order to store the BAT cryptocurrency, a wallet is needed, and luckily, Brave has one. It is not the only web browser that comes with a crypto wallet built-in. Opera also provides a wallet, but most folks probably won’t make use of it because they’re not earning.
But by using Brave, you’re bound to earn some BAT if you really want to. Or you could turn off all the cryptocurrency options and use it as a regular web browser. The choice is yours, so take the one that makes sense for you.
We should point out that at the time of writing, the Brave wallet is only available for desktop users on Windows, Linux, and macOS. We hope the mobile version of Brave comes around to full parity in this regard in the near future.
Brave browser is about the Privacy
As we have stated, Brave is all about privacy, mostly. If you want to keep yourself protected, then the Shields function will work a lot of magic. However, because some websites require certain features to work correctly, you may have to drop the Shields from time to time.
Additionally, the Brave browser comes with HTTPS Everywhere feature built-in, which means, the browser will automatically establish a connection to every website over HTTPS. If a website only supports HTTP, then the user will see a Not Secure warning in a section of the address bar.
Private Browsing and Tor
If you want simple private browsing, then Brave has that locked down like all other web browsers. However, how many of them come packed with Tor built-in? Not many, but Brave does. Use the Tor feature to hide your IP address from websites and your internet service provider.
Some limitations you should know of
OK, so when using Tor you won’t be able to tell which individual note is in use. You need to be careful because the Tor network attracts scammers, cybercriminals, bots, and legitimate users alike. To be on the safe side, some websites may force the user to take a CAPTCHA test when visiting to ensure the user is not a bot. Also, a browser’s private mode does not protect your privacy. It will only stop your history from retaining information, and that’s all.
Read: Brave browser not opening or working on Windows
Brave browser is easy to use
To put it simply, Brave is easy to use, like most or all web browsers bar Internet Explorer. So we do not expect users to have a lot of problems getting around.
The User Interface
If you’ve used Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge, then it won’t take long for you to fully understand Brave’s user interface. Most of the features are locked away in the Settings area, which is also easy to get to and navigate through.
On the homepage, you’ll find a lot of information. For example, the time, the about of bandwidth and hours saved, and data about crypto and BAT earnings.
As for the mobile version, it is just as easy, if not easier. The controls are arranged at the bottom of the page, but if our memories serve us right, it is possible to rearrange them. Also, if you want to
Performance of Brave browser
At the end of the day, Brave will render web pages just like any other Chromium-based browser. From our various checks, I found that the likes of Microsoft Edge, Firefox and Google Chrome are slightly faster to load pages, but Brave is not far behind. But you know what? If you just want to earn some funds and protect your privacy, then a little bit of performance fall-off is not a bad idea.
In terms of RAM usage, Brave doesn’t seem to eat a lot when compared to Chrome. In fact, Chrome has become a resource hog over the years so this revelation is not all that surprising.
Can you be tracked using the Brave browser?
Brave does not track users across the web if the correct tools are used. By default, these tools are activated; therefore, the user doesn’t have to make any changes. It blocks third-party cookies and scripts and offers shields to block any tracking; that said, there is nothing 100% foolproof, as you may block via browser, but the ISP is still tracking.
Read: Brave browser Group Policy templates for Enterprise
Is Brave a Chinese browser?