Saturday, September 17, 2011

Wrath of the browsers

Almost half a year has passed since my initial HTML5 performance test. Most browsers have seen various updates and Construct 2 has improved a lot for sure. Time to give this another whirl.

The good news is that the average fps count has risen from a measly 27.6 to 39.8, which means a considerable improvement of 44,2%. Not bad at all.

Let's have a look at the cold hard facts:

Apple's Safari gives quite the phoenix out of the ashes performance and rises from a non-existent framerate the last time to the bronze medal, beating Firefox by 4 fps. While the Mozilla browser can improve and is about one third faster than it was with version 4.0, I still hoped for Firefox to make the leap to the top this time.

Speaking of the top: there can only be one. And it's not the Internet Explorer taking all the glory this time, but Chrome, which comes in at an impressive 62 fps. So Google isn't too far away from having doubled its browsers HTML5 performance. Wow.

At the same time Microsoft didn't see the need to have constant updates for their flagship browser. This laziness costs them the top spot. What's strange though is that results are weaker than last time, although they should be the same. My testing system is the same as well of course, so I can't quite explain the 7 fps difference from last times 54 fps top position here I'm afraid.

Sadly Opera proves to be an disappointment as well. While the version number has progressed, the HTML5 performance is still exactly the same. Which means the last place for this browser.

Additionally I tested the performance with Scirra's own Ghost Shooter demo, which proved to be a very interesting comparison.

This looks completely different. To my surprise the big three all do equally well. And then there's a really big gap to Opera and Safari. And while the Apple browser shows a bad habit again, displaying only plain black, Opera can at least display the fullscreen game at the ridiculous speed of 10fps.

So, what would one conclude from all that? It seems you are mostly on the safe side nowadays if you stick with either Chrome, IE9 or Firefox, which are the most popular browsers anyway. That's a very good sign.

Google seems still ahead of the pack when it comes to hefty tasks, such as creating and resizing sprites constantly. The Internet Explorer and especially Firefox fall quite behind. Of course these are rather superficial observations from these two simple tests.

What's certain is that one can expect further improvements in HTML5 performance. Only smaller players like Opera and Safari give reason to worry, but they will eventually close the lines as well. So let's do this again in a few months!

Oh, and for the record my pc specs:

AMD X4 640 3Ghz
4GB DDR2 800

C2 examples used:

Ghost Shooter

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