Why does Google Chrome use so much RAM?

Updated: 04/02/2019 by Computer Hope
Google Chrome Logo

In the Windows Task Manager, on the Processes tab, you may have noticed that Google Chrome uses what would appear to be more than its fair share of your computer's memory. To find out why, read through the following sections.

An image showing Google Chrome's memory usage.

Higher user demand

Over the years, browsers have become more advanced with additional features, and users require better performance. In addition to the higher demand for media consumption (e.g., playing games, and streaming video), tabbed browsing increases resource usage. Each browser tab uses a significant amount of memory, often between 100-250 MB.

Stability

Google Chrome utilizes different processes for various components, such as extra tabs (as we mentioned in the previous section), plugins, and browser extensions. While it may seem inefficient, this method allows Chrome to function even if one of these components fail, which is generally considered to be better than crashing.

Speed and efficiency

One of the best ways to improve performance is a method called pre-rendering. Pre-rendering assumes that certain links are likely to be clicked, and starts loading that content in the background. In versions 63 and later of Chrome, pre-rendering uses a technology called NoState Prefetch that requires approximately 50 MB of RAM for each pre-rendered page.