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Keith J. Grant

I tried Arc Browser as my default browser for several months. I even tried to talk a few co-workers into doing the same. I absolutely love the way it manages Spaces, and no other browser comes close to this kind of reasonable, real-world tab management, not by light years.

Unfortunately, I’ve had to give up. I’m switching back to Firefox. A few issues were starting to feel like death by a thousand papercuts. Here are my reasons for giving up on Arc:

  1. Multi-window behavior is just too strange; and I always have two windows open side-by-side on my ultrawide monitor. The way Arc works, all tabs for the active workspace are listed on the left. With you have two windows open to the same workspace, each window lists all the tabs for that workspace; it looks like you can click that tab in either window, which you sometimes can, but not for more app-like sites or heavier interfaces. In short, I found I consistently had to keep mental track of which window actually had any given tab open. This became too much as I moved windows around (which I often do during video calls/screenshares).
  2. I miss the URL bar. I get what they’re going for with the ultra-minimalism, but this is just a bit too far. “Developer mode” seemed like a promising compromise, but I wasn’t about to take the three clicks needed to activate it for each and every website where I might manually edit the url.
  3. Even with careful folder management, I just have too many boorkmarks in my Space for “work”. Because in Arc, your tabs are your bookmarks. My permanent tabs filled the left sidebar much of the time, even with only a couple temporary tabs open.
  4. I really, really want my browser history to sync with my phone. After the disappointing launch of their mobile app that was... well, not even a browser, I couldn’t do it any longer.
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