I know that Chrome for Windows and Chrome for Mac are extremely similar. So similar that I only notice one difference for the Mac version: the green + button doesn't maximize. However, that can be remedied: http://maximizechrome.com. According to Google - I'm not sure where - there's only one difference: dragging highlighted text. I didn't notice this, but I don't usually drag highlighted text.

I don't use Safari very often, but one thing I do appreciate is when an app behaves the same no matter your OS. I might even switch to Safari if it does this. Thus, the question: Are there any differences, feature-wise, between Safari for Mac and Safari for Windows?

I mean real differences, not just things like the dropdown box styling provided by the OS.

  • See also: this Stack Overflow question.
    – jtbandes
    Mar 23, 2012 at 22:19
  • @jtbandes: yea, that was one of the first hits for my question but it has to do with the webdev's point of view, not from the user's point of view. Mar 23, 2012 at 22:21

3 Answers 3


Anything involving the multi-touch track pad is going to be different, since that is an OS X feature. Including the double finger gesture to scroll back or forward.

enter image description here

In fact that feature works so seamlessly in Safari for Mac that that's one of the reasons I might switch to Safari from Chrome. It integrates beautifully with all the latest features of OS X.

  • Aha! I just knew it - but I didn't have access to an Apple trackpad right now so I couldn't check. Mar 23, 2012 at 22:23

There is a significant issue in viewing PDFs on web sites.

Adobe Reader for Mac has a browser plug-in for viewing PDF files. It's never been compatible with FireFox for Mac, or Safari 5.1 and higher for Mac.

With FireFox, there's no reliable way to view a PDF file that's on a link from a Web site within FireFox itself. The best you can do is download it and open it using a PDF viewer on your Mac.

With Safari, you can view a PDF file in the browser window with Mac OS X's built-in PDF display capability. It works well enough, but it isn't the Adobe Reader Browser Plug-in, and that can create some problems with services that require the Adobe plug-in.


Pretty much all of the menu options and features in Safari for Windows are exactly the same as Safari for Mac, but you won't get the same integration with the operating system that you see on OS X — standard-looking Downloads popover, Dictionary integration, great drag & drop and text editing, a nice PDF plugin, gesture support, etc.

I can see the benefits of using the same browser on two operating systems (familiarity, syncing of user data, etc.). But I have to mention that most of my Windows-using friends really dislike Apple's Windows software — it doesn't quite "fit in" with the rest of Windows, and they have a Software Update for Windows that's infamous for sticking around when you try to delete it, offering to install new software that you don't want.

Basically, I think that if you want a better Windows experience, you probably shouldn't use Safari. Chrome seems to be a favorite of many, and it uses the same rendering engine as Safari, so the web will work just as well.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .