The newly released web browser Brave claims to be ad-free but how true is that?

Brendan Eich, the former CEO of Mozilla, and also the inventor of JavaScript has unleashed his new brainchild on the internet; an ad-free web browser that automatically blocks tracking cookies, and promises a faster, privacy respecting online experience.

web browser

The new Brave browser is, according, to Eich, 1.5 to 4 times faster than its competitors because it  gets rid of adverts and crucially, all the embedded tracking code that is found in vast quantities on most ad supported websites.

Brave has been built on the base layer of Chromium , another open source browser that Google itself uses as the basis for its own Chrome browser.

“Up to a whopping 60 per cent of page load time is caused by the underlying ad technology that loads into various places each time you hit a page on your favorite news site,” says the Brave website. “And 20 per cent of this is time spent on loading things that are trying to learn more about you.”

Eich himself, in a blog post thinks that the Web is in dire trouble:

“You use a browser to find and contribute information, but you generally do not pay for the websites who host that information. Across billions of people, for most sites in most countries, it isn’t realistic to expect anything but a free Web. And as Ben Thompson points out, “free” means ad-supported in the main. Yes, successful sites and apps may convert you to a paying customer, but most won’t.”

Well that’s great, an ad free browser, go Eich!

Not quite.  There is a catch. The question is, is it a catch you can live with.  You see, Brave isn’t itself ad-free.

“The new Brave browser blocks all the greed and ugliness on  the Web that slows you down and invades your privacy. Then we put clean ads back, to fund website owners and Brave users alike. Users can spend their funds to go ad-free  on their favorite sites.”

Instead of simply being a catch all ad blocker, Brave will actually still display ads. The difference, apparently, is that Brave is taking a different approach to its competitors.

“The idea is that advertisers will still be able to reach users but they won’t have the same depth of information on an individual user. Nor will Brave. The result, in theory, is greater control over privacy and none of those ads for products you recently looked at that make you feel as though you are being watched, the Register has repoorted.”

For this who might be interested in trying Brave out, you can sign up for the ongoing Beta, currently at 0.7, here.