February 28, 2013 was
a momentous day for the BenchmarkXPRT Development Community. On that day, we
published a press release announcing the official launch of the first version
of the WebXPRT benchmark, WebXPRT 2013. As difficult as it is for us to
believe, the 10-year anniversary of the initial WebXPRT launch is in just a few
We introduced WebXPRT
as a truly unique browser performance benchmark in a field that was already
crowded with a variety of measurement tools. Since those early days, the WebXPRT
market presence has grown from a small foothold into a worldwide industry
standard. Over the years, hundreds of tech press publications have used WebXPRT
in thousands of articles and reviews, and the WebXPRT completed-runs counter
rolled over the 1,000,000-run mark.
New web technologies
are continually changing the way we use the web, and browser-performance
benchmarks should evaluate how well new devices handle the web of today, not
the web of several years ago. While some organizations have stopped development
for other browser performance benchmarks, we’ve had the opportunity to continue
updating and refining WebXPRT. We can look back at each of the four major
iterations of the benchmark—WebXPRT 2013, WebXPRT 2015, WebXPRT 3, and WebXPRT 4—and
see a consistent philosophy and shared technical lineage contributing to a product
that has steadily improved.
As we get closer to the 10-year anniversary of WebXPRT next year, we’ll be sharing more insights about its reach and impact on the industry, discussing possible future plans for the benchmark, and announcing some fun anniversary-related opportunities for WebXPRT users. We think 2023 will be the best year yet for WebXPRT!
When we first released WebXPRT 2013, some users in mainland China reported slow download times when running the benchmark. In response, we set up a mirror host site in Singapore to facilitate WebXPRT testing in China and other East Asian countries. We continued this practice with subsequent WebXPRT versions, and currently offer Singapore-based instances of WebXPRT 4, WebXPRT 3, and WebXPRT 2015.
Until this past month,
we used an Amazon Web Services (AWS) EC2-Classic environment to host the
Singapore mirror site. Because Amazon retired the EC2-Classic environment, we
had to migrate each of the WebXPRT Singapore instances to a new AWS Virtual
Private Cloud (VPC) environment.
We do not expect the new environment to affect WebXPRT Singapore testing or results, and have not yet observed any significant differences in WebXPRT performance scores while testing on the new site. If you have a different experience when testing on the new site or encounter interruptions when trying to access the test, please let us know!
We’re excited to see that users have successfully completed over 1,000,000 WebXPRT runs! If you’ve run WebXPRT in any of the 924 cities and 81 countries from which we’ve received complete test data—including newcomers Bahrain, Bangladesh, Mauritius, The Philippines, and South Korea —we’re grateful for your help. We could not have reached this milestone without you!
As the chart below illustrates, WebXPRT use has grown steadily since the debut of WebXPRT 2013. On average, we now record more WebXPRT runs in one month than we recorded in the entirety of our first year. With over 104,000 runs so far in 2022, that growth is continuing.
For us, this moment represents more than a numerical milestone. Developing and maintaining a benchmark is never easy, and a cross-platform benchmark that will run on a wide variety of devices poses an additional set of challenges. For such a benchmark to succeed, developers need not only technical competency, but the trust and support of the benchmarking community. WebXPRT is now in its ninth year, and its consistent year-over-year growth tells us that the benchmark continues to hold value for manufacturers, OEM labs, the tech press, and end users like you. We see it as a sign of trust that folks repeatedly return to the benchmark for reliable performance metrics. We’re grateful for that trust, and for everyone that’s contributed to the WebXPRT development process throughout the years.
We’ll have more to share related to this exciting milestone in the weeks to come, so stay tuned to the blog. If you have any questions or comments about WebXPRT, we’d love to hear from you!
Device reviews in publications
such as AnandTech, Notebookcheck, and PCMag, among many others, often feature
WebXPRT test results, and we appreciate the many members of the tech press that
use WebXPRT. As we move forward with the WebXPRT 4 development process, we’re especially
interested in learning what longtime users would like to see in a new version
of the benchmark.
In previous posts,
we’ve asked people to weigh in on the potential addition of a WebAssembly workload or a battery life test. We’d also like to ask experienced testers some other
test-related questions. To that end, this week we’ll be sending a WebXPRT 4
survey directly to members of the tech press who frequently publish WebXPRT
Regardless of whether you are a member of the tech press, we invite you to participate by sending your answers to any or all the questions below to email@example.com. We ask you to do so by the end of May.
Do you think WebXPRT 3’s selection of workload scenarios is representative of modern web tasks?
How do you think WebXPRT compares to other common browser-based benchmarks, such as JetStream, Speedometer, and Octane?
Are there web technologies that you’d like us to include in additional workloads?
Are you happy with the WebXPRT 3 user interface? If not, what UI changes would you like to see?
Are there any aspects of WebXPRT 2015 that we changed in WebXPRT 3 that you’d like to see us change back?
Have you ever experienced significant connection issues when testing with WebXPRT?
Given the array of workloads, do you think the WebXPRT runtime is reasonable? Would you mind if the average runtime were a bit longer?
Are there any other aspects of WebXPRT 3 that you’d like to see us change?
If you’d like to discuss any topics
that we did not cover in the questions above, please feel free to include additional
comments in your response. We look forward to hearing your thoughts!
At over 412,000 runs and counting, WebXPRT is our most popular benchmark. From the first release in 2013, it’s been popular with device manufacturers, developers, tech journalists, and consumers because it’s easy to run, it runs on almost anything with a web browser, and it evaluates device performance using the types of web-based tasks that people are likely to encounter on a daily basis.
With each new version of WebXPRT, we analyze browser development trends to make sure the test’s underlying web technologies and workload scenarios adequately reflect the ways people are using their browsers to work and play. BenchmarkXPRT Development Community members can play an important part in that process by sending us feedback on existing tests and suggestions for new workloads to include.
For example, when we released WebXPRT 3, we updated the photo workloads with new images and a deep learning task used for image classification. We also added an optical character recognition task in the Encrypt Notes and OCR scan workload, and combined part of the DNA Sequence Analysis scenario with a writing sample/spell check scenario to simulate online homework in an all-new Online Homework workload.
Consider for a moment what an ideal future version of WebXPRT would look like for you. Are there new web technologies or workload scenarios that you would like to see? Would you be interested in an associated battery life test? Should we include experimental tests? We’re interested in what you have to say, so please feel free to contact us with your thoughts or questions.
If you’re just now learning about WebXPRT, we offer several resources to help you better understand the benchmark and its range of uses. For a general overview of why WebXPRT matters, watch our video titled What is WebXPRT and why should I care? To read more about the details of the benchmark’s development and structure, check out the Exploring WebXPRT 3 white paper. To see WebXPRT 2015 and WebXPRT 3 scores from a wide range of processors, visit the WebXPRT 3 Processor Comparison Chart.
Just this past summer, WebXPRT passed the 250,000-run milestone, and since then, the run total has already passed 330,000. September was our biggest month ever, with over 28,000 WebXPRT runs! We sometimes like to show the community how far a reach the XPRTs have around the world by reporting the latest stats on the number of articles and reviews that mention the XPRTs, and the fact is that most of those mentions involve WebXPRT. Today, I thought it would be interesting to bring the numbers to life and provide a glimpse of how the tech press uses WebXPRT. Here’s a sample of WebXPRT in action during the past couple of weeks.
While WebXPRT continues to be a useful tool for tech enthusiasts around the world, you don’t have to be a tech expert to benefit from it. If you’d like to know more about WebXPRT, check out our recent video, What is WebXPRT and why should I care?