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Here, at Maxthon’s San Francisco office, when we saw this:  we did a double take. That was the second major browser company touting a ‘lighter, simpler and more minimalist browser’ project in less than 6 months. The first was Mozilla, leaked in August just after Chris Beard was named its new CEO.  Here’s a link to a cache-d version of their blog that was unpublished within 24 hours of it being published on August 7, 2014.
Let’s check and see who started what first…
Maxthon —> ‘Nitro’, started in March of 2014
Mozilla —>  ‘Lightspeed’ started in July of 2014
Microsoft —> ‘Spartan,’ started Fall of 2014.

Yep. Mozilla and Microsoft are copying Maxthon. We started the lightweight/spartan browser trend. In March of 2014 we kicked off a project to create a *very* lightweight browser with minimal feature set and SUPER performance.  We knew that if we simplified the UX load and all of the processes that needed to exist to support skins, plug-ins and tons of other features we could make the core speed faster. In a March 21, 2014 email one of our engineers summarized the concept of Nitro to me this way, “It will not be feature rich, in fact, I would go as far as it is “bare” minimum. What it lacks in feature set size will be made up for in:

start-up speed
rendering speed and stability.”

This is an important distinction to remember.  To reap gains in start-up time, page fetching and rendering and stability something had to give. And that something was a large list of features and tools. Things like the screenshot utility, split-screen, cloud services and add ons. All of these come with a significant performance and stability hit. But, we were OK with it — as we knew from looking at our detailed user data pool that *most* web browser users do NOT use most of the features. We mention this now because as the more traditional Maxthon users discover Nitro, the more they are asking for the favorite features to be added.  You can’t have all of that super speed without sacrificing some of your favorite features.  (Even Chrome acknowledges that limitation.) Here’s a very short side-by-side to help you decide which version of our PC browsers to use and why…

If you want… Maxthon Nitro Maxthon 4 Cloud Browser
Fastest start-up time X
Fastest page rendering X
Smartest caching and pre-fetching X
Minimalist UX X
Cross Platform Cloud Services X
Add-ons/Plug-ins X
Screenshot capture X
Mx Notes X

Bottom line, if you’re the sort of browser consumer who likes to customize, tinker and use a combination of skins and add-ons, Nitro was not made for you.  You should stick to Maxthon 4 — our Cloud Browser.  It’s feature rich, cross-platform and still incredibly fast. BUT – if you’re a more minimalist browser user you should give Nitro a try.  It’s so clean and fast you sometimes forget you’re browsing the web. It feels almost like you’re looking at locally-hosted webpages. Having said that, you can bet that, as we have before ,we are now looking at Nitro and seeing which of our most popular features we may be able to add back to Nitro without sacrificing any of its speed.

Stay Tuned!