Brave, our review of this alternative browser
In the world of web browsers, Internet users are familiar with the four main players: Google Chrome, which dominates the market, followed by Mozilla Firefox, Apple’s Safari, and the former leader Microsoft, which, with Internet Explorer and its successor Edge, continues to lose users day after day. We can also mention the Norwegian browser Opera and its fork Vivaldi, which together do not exceed 2% of market share in 2020.
This new browser, whose main assets are its speed and security, quickly became a small success. Its original operation has attracted many criticisms at the beginning from content editors (NAA – Newspapers Association of America). Indeed, Brave replaces the native advertisements of websites by new ones that it provides. These are less intrusive and more qualitative.
Another key point is that the Brave browser distributes a part of these advertising revenues to different actors via the BAT crypto: advertisers, publishers but also Internet users.
Brave, privacy and security
Brave is very strict when it comes to respecting its users’ data. The browser natively integrates HTTPS Everywhere, an open source extension edited by the EFF (Electronic Fontier Foundation) and Tor Project. It allows to display in secure (HTTPS) sites that are not. This extension must be added on other browsers such as Firefox, Chrome or Opera.
The default search engine is Qwant, which has privacy as its main concern. Of course it is possible to change for a more or less respectful search engine: Google, DuckDuckGo, Bing, Ecosia or Startpage are the proposed alternatives.
Brave have a build-in tor proxy
Brave offers a particularly interesting feature, it has a build-in Tor proxy which can be used to browse the web anonymously. It gives you the ability to perform private browsing via the Tor network with one click. The network also allows blocking of trackers and prevents monitoring of your connection via multi-layer encryption. For people who really care about their privacy and don’t even want to leak their metadata, the built-in Tor proxy is a godsend.
Browsing through Tor can be slow and fickle. When it’s working fine, no worries, you don’t notice the difference. But we had trouble connecting many times. Note that Qwant is then selected as the search engine even if it is no longer the default.
Tor is a free, open-source software for enabling anonymous communication. Tor encrypts your traffic and bounces it through a series of relays (called nodes) run by volunteers across the world. This makes it harder for someone to trace where the traffic is coming from and what the traffic contains. The network is known for its ability to browse the Deep Web (or Dark Web) without a VPN, but also because it allows many Internet users to bypass their government’s censorship.
Using the build-in feature to turn on the Tor proxy is as easy as downloading and opening Brave, then going to (Preferences > Settings) and turning on the toggle for the “Allow Tor” option.
Once you’ve done that, you will automatically be connected to the Tor network. You can check this by going to (Brave Preferences > Privacy) and looking at the “Tor” tab.
It’s important to note that using the Tor proxy doesn’t mean you’re anonymous. If you want to hide your identity from your internet service provider or government, you’ll have to use Tor Browser to access the web.
Brave is fast and efficient
The Brave browser is fast, very fast. Whether on Windows or Mac, desktop or mobile, browsing Brave is comfortable. With Brave Shields, by blocking ads, trackers, cookies, and all sorts of tracking scripts, pages are loaded much faster. It uses much less RAM than its competitors, browsing is faster and your device’s battery will run down less quickly. When testing via slow connections (3G or ADSL), you can really see the benefits.
With an older generation computer or smartphone, which often have less ram and a less powerful processor, you can finally forget about overheating and system slowdown problems.
If the autonomy of your laptop or your smartphone starts to fail, we can only recommend you to use Brave, you will gain valuable navigation time.
Brave Rewards, BAT and Ad Revenue Distribution
Adblock Plus had already gone down this road. Brave also wants to offer an alternative for the redistribution of advertising revenues.
Brave allows you to replace the ads of the standard advertising agencies with those it offers. The browser provides a wallet, which must be activated in Preferences > Payments. You assign a monthly budget that you want to pay to the different sites you visit. Brave redistributes the amount according to its internal algorithm. In order for a site to get its payment, it must contact the browser to obtain the “Verified” status.
Many Internet users support this idea of direct remuneration which is close to short circuits and local. Brave gets many positive opinions on the web, as many people who are satisfied with its ease of use, as with its alternative remuneration system.
This better distribution of income is made possible by the Ethereum blockchain. The BAT (Basic Attention Token) is a standard token that originates from the Ethereum network. Advertisers, via the blockchain, can thus cut out the middleman.
Our opinion on the Brave navigator
The benefits of Brave
- Very secure
- Ad-free natively
- Many updates
- A remuneration of the editors directly via the BAT crypto