10 Ways to Speed Up Google Chrome on PC or Mac

Last Updated: September 27, 2016

Google Chrome is the most used desktop browser in the world and rightly so, as it’s also one of the most feature rich browsers. However, it is also notorious for eating up resources quickly and slowing down your computer; especially if it’s an older machine. Chances are, if you are a power user, you may not be satisfied with the performance Chrome has to offer.

Whatever your reason is; if you are looking to speed up Google Chrome then there are multiple tweaks to give Google’s browser a speed boost. Today, we will show you 10 simple yet effective ways to speed up Chrome:

1. Remove Unnecessary Extensions

Let’s start with something basic; many of the Chrome extensions work in the background to provide their services. In the process, they eat up a lot of system’s resources as they do their job. So, if you have too many extensions enabled on Chrome, they could easily be the reason of bad performance on Chrome. You should either disable or delete all the extensions that you don’t use anymore.

To do so, click on the hamburger menu at the top right corner of Chrome and then click on “More tools”. After that, click on “Extensions” from the side menu.


Now you should be directed to the extensions page where all your extensions will be listed. To disable an extension, click on the “Checkbox” next to it. If you would like to completely remove the extension, then click on the “Trash can” icon next to it. We will also recommend you to disable extensions that you don’t use frequently, so that they are available when you need them again.


2. Enable Chrome Prefetch

Chrome uses a prediction service to try and guess what links and pages you may click next and automatically loads them in the background, so that the pages load up quickly. Of course, this uses more data but it also makes browsing considerably fast.

To enable Chrome prefetch, go to “Settings” from the Chrome hamburger menu and click on “Show advanced options” at the bottom of the page.


Here, Tick the checkbox next to the option “Use a prediction service to load pages more quickly” under the “Privacy” heading. You should disable this feature if you have a limited internet plan.


3. Use Chrome Data Saver

Google Chrome can use Google servers to compress web pages to make them faster to load and also use less bandwidth. If you have a slow connection with limited data, then this could be a life changer for you. However, this is not a built-in Chrome feature, instead Google offers a Chrome extension of its own that you can install in Chrome.

You can install Data Saver extension for Chrome and it will automatically start compressing web pages as you browse the web. Although it should be kept in mind that the extension doesn’t work on encrypted web pages; the one with “https” at the start of the address.

4. Make Flash Plugins Click to Load

Numerous websites use flash content like videos, ads and other type of interactive content. Such content is mostly very heavy and it might slow down a page. I, actually find videos between content and interactive quizzes (and similar plugins) on the side to be very distractive and I am sure many will agree with me. Well, you can make sure that the flash content only loads up when you click on it, so that your bandwidth is saved, distractions are minimum and Chrome works smoothly.

To do that, go to Chrome’s Advanced Settings like above and click on “Content Settings” in the “Privacy” heading.


Now, scroll down and select the option “Let me choose when to run plugin content” under the “Plugins” section. Once done, whenever a plugin or flash content appears on a page, it will only play when you click on it.


5. Disable Images

This isn’t a recommended solution, but if you can live with it then it could be extremely beneficial. You can disable images in Chrome and all the images on the web pages will not load. Although images make a web page attractive and more informative, they are also very heavy and are the reason why certain web pages take a lot of time to load. If you are only looking to read something, you can disable the images and easily speed up page loading time.

To disable images in Chrome go to the same “Content Settings” page like we did in the above tip. Here, choose the option “Do not show any images” under the “Images” section.


6. Clear Chrome Data

Chrome may become sluggish due to too much data it is holding, such as cookies, cached content and browsing history. If you haven’t deleted this data for quite some time, then it could be the reason for the slow down.

Go to “History” from the Chrome hamburger menu or by pressing Ctrl+H, and click on the “Clear browsing data” button at the top.


Now, you check the checkbox next to the different data you would like to delete and click on the “Clear browsing data” button to delete the data. We will not recommend you to delete passwords and autofill form data, as they are very important for daily browsing and also don’t put any noticeable pressure on the browser.


Chrome Experimental Features

The are also some Chrome Experimental Features that can greatly improve the performance of Chrome and speed it up. However, these features are not official and may not be stable on all the machines. Although in most cases they work just fine without any noticeable negative effect. If any of these experimental features negatively affect your browsing experience, then you should revert the changes you made.

To access these features, type “chrome://flags” in the address bar and hit enter. After that use the “Find” feature (Ctrl+F) to find the experimental features that we have mentioned below:


7. Change Tile Height and Width

You can adjust tile height and width to allocate more RAM to it. This will allow better scrolling and least stuttering while using Chrome browser. However, it should only be adjusted if you have enough RAM for Chrome; 4GB should work just fine.

Type “Default tile” in the Find dialog and you should see both Default tile width and height options. Use the drop down menus below them and change it from “Default” to 512. You can allocate more or less, but 512 should work fine for most people.


8. Enable Experimental canvas features

This is an under development feature that allows Chrome to take advantage of canvases to speed up web page loading speed. Simply put, it may remove different types of content while opening a web page. However, the changes won’t be visible to the users – but it’s there.

Search for “Experimental canvas features” and click on the “Enable” button below it, to enable this feature.


9. Enable Fast tab/window close

This is another handy feature that allows Chrome to quickly close tabs and windows to make it work fast. In actual, Chrome just shows you that it has closed the tab/window quickly, but the closing process continues in the background. This means Chrome is not actually speeding up the tab closing process, instead it is just hiding it from you and preventing it from getting in your way. In practice, this does speed up your browsing because at your end, you don’t have to wait for a second as the tab closes.

Search for “Fast tab/window close” and click the “Enable” button below to turn on this feature.


10. Enable QUIC protocol

A work in development connection protocol created by Google that prevents multiple trips to the server to create a connection. This makes it better than UDP, as less trips to make a connection means less time spent to create a connection and load the page. Usually, at least 2-3 trips are made before a connection is created with the server.

Search for the option “Experimental QUIC protocol” and use the drop down menu below it to enable it.


Once these experimental features are enabled, you will have to restart Chrome to let these changes take effect. Click on the big “RELAUNCH NOW” button at the bottom of the screen to relaunch Chrome and see if it speeds up.


SEE ALSO: 10 Cool Extensions to Customize New Tab in Chrome

See Any Difference in Chrome’s performance?

The aforementioned ways should be enough to at least create a noticeable difference in Chrome speed. I believe disabling images and allowing plugins to only play when allowed are great ways to get a quick boost in page loading speed. However, both of these methods will affect your browsing experience. It should also be kept in mind that the experimental features explained above could also slow down page loading speed for some people (very rare) and if this happens; just set the options to defaults.

Well, if you know of any other ways to speed up Chrome, do share with us in the comments section below to help other users.


Karrar is drenched in technology and always fiddles with new tech opportunities. He has a bad habit of calling technology “Killer”, and doesn't feel bad about spending too much time in front of the PC. If he is not writing about technology, you will find him spending quality time with his little family.