There's a good reason that the vast majority of people use Chrome to browse the web. For one thing, it's Google's browser and it defaults to searching with Google. Obviously. It's also the default browser on many Android phones and tablets.

This all makes it highly convenient, not least because - if you sign in - all your stuff is synced automatically between your devices. Passwords, bookmarks, open tabs and more.

And until recently, it also led the pack for speed. It's one of the best web browsers around.

Microsoft has shouted for a long while that its own browsers are more efficient and won't run down your battery as fast but it has done little to improve market share: the newer Edge (built into Windows 10) doesn't even make the top six and Internet Explorer has a measly 3.4 percent market share.

That's the latest figure from StatCounter which currently places Firefox fourth with just under 6 percent.

Mozilla hasn't been sitting around twiddling its thumbs though. First it released a new browser for mobile called Firefox Focus. That concentrated on privacy and offered a fast, safe way to browse the web on Android and iOS.

But it was also working on a new generation of the main Firefox browser called Quantum. So if you're running Firefox 57 or later, you have Quantum.

So what is Quantum, and is it good enough to persuade you to use it instead of Chrome?

Chrome vs Firefox

It's still Firefox, but with a redesigned interface and an all-new engine that's said to be twice as quick as the old Firefox. And it's true. It feels fast. Even pages you've never loaded before appear remarkably quickly.

There's beefed up privacy, too, using the tracking protection from Firefox Focus. This prevents adverts tracking you as you browse. Unfortunately this is only enabled by default for private browsing sessions, so you'll have to go to the options and toggle it to 'Always'.

Blocking trackers has a side benefit - faster page-load times. Up to 44 percent quicker, Firefox says. And you only have to try it yourself to see that this isn't just marketing hype. It really does speed up the web.

Chrome vs Firefox

Also, Firefox Quantum uses less RAM than Chrome. In an unscientific test, we loaded the same 10 tabs in Chrome 63 and Firefox 57. Task Manager (in Windows 10) reported that Firefox was using 480MB less than Chrome. Note that Chrome is using 19 processes vs 7 for Firefox.

Chrome vs Firefox

However, that's just a snapshot in time: memory usage fluctuates all the time. Re-checking Task Manager a few times over a 15 minute period showed that Chrome was using a bit less than Firefox, or they were about the same.

There's no need to measure page-load times: they're visibly quicker than Chrome. And previously where intensive pages such as huge, multi-tab spreadsheets in Google Docs would crash Firefox and only work in Chrome, Quantum appears to be able to handle them just as well.

From a convenience point of view, Mozilla has added features to help Firefox compete with Chrome. There's a built-in QR code reader, plus 'copy link', 'take a screenshot' and 'Send Tab to Device' options available from the 'three-dot' menu to the right of the address bar.

Chrome vs Firefox

As long as you're signed in to Firefox on another device you can select it and the tab will appear.

This does require a bit of work on your part, of course. You have to install Firefox on all your devices and sign in with your account. That means creating an account. A small hassle, granted, but it's easier on Chrome because most people already have a Google account.

So what else is there to tempt you? Well, there's a whole lot more customisation, so you can add buttons for shortcuts such as print, full-screen or 'forget'. The latter surfaces the otherwise hidden options for deleting browsing history, cookies and closing tabs used for, say, the last five minutes.

 You can also define which email app opens when you click an email address. In Chrome that just sends you to Gmail.

If you want to you can change the font, including size and colour, used in the browser and there's a whole section so you can pick which app is used to open various file types you download from the web. Very useful indeed.

So which is best: Firefox or Chrome?

Lately we've been getting a little fed up with Chrome. Sluggish performance and excessive memory use (not to mention increased fan noise from laptops and PCs when lots of tabs are open).

Firefox Quantum isn't just a lick of paint over the old browser. It really does feel quicker. And with the built-in tracking protection and the customisation, it really is very good. (It still lacks the built-in VPN of Opera, though.)

Switching browsers can be a hassle, but Firefox will happily import all your stuff from Chrome. Not just bookmarks, but history, passwords and more.

Yes, you will have to install Firefox on your phone(s) and tablet(s) if you want everything to sync, but setting up everything shouldn't take more than 30 minutes.