Brave (web browser)

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Brave logo.svg
Brave on Windows 10
Brave on Windows 10
Developer(s)Brave Software, Inc.[1]
Stable release(s)
Android: 1.4.3 Desktop: 1.0 / 13 November 2019
Preview release(s)
Beta: 0.72.121 Dev: 0.73.63 Nightly: 0.74.13 / 9 November 2019
Written inC, JavaScript, C++
EnginesBlink, V8
Operating system
Available inEnglish
TypeWeb browser

Brave is a free and open-source web browser developed by Brave Software, Inc. based on the Chromium web browser.[3] The browser blocks ads and website trackers. The company has proposed adopting a Get paid to surf business model in a future version of the browser.

As of 2019, Brave has been released for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS. The current version features five search engines by default, including their partner, DuckDuckGo.[4]


Brave is developed by Brave Software, which was founded on 28 May 2015, by CEO Brendan Eich and CTO Brian Bondy. On 20 January 2016, Brave Software launched the first version of Brave with an ad blocking feature, and announced plans for a privacy ad feature and a revenue sharing program.[5]

In June 2018, Brave released a pay-to-surf test version of the browser. This version of Brave is preloaded with approximately 250 ads, and sends a detailed log of the user's browsing activity to Brave for the short-term purpose of testing this functionality. Brave announced that expanded trials will follow.[6] Later that month, Brave added support for Tor in its desktop browser's private browsing mode.[7]

Until December 2018, Brave ran on a fork of Electron called Muon which was marketed as a "more secure fork". Nevertheless, Brave developers moved to Chromium citing a need to ease their maintenance burden.[3] The final Muon-based version was released with the intention that it would stop working and instruct users to update as the end of life approached.[8]

In June 2019 Brave started testing new ad-blocking rule matching algorithm implemented in Rust that Brave claims is on average 69 times faster than the previous implementation in C++. The new algorithm is inspired by the uBlock Origin and Ghostery algorithms.[9]

Brave launched its stable release version 1.0 in 13 November 2019 while having 8.7 million monthly active users overall.[10] At the time, it also had approximately 3 million active users on a daily basis. Brave 1.0 was made available for Android, iOS, Windows 10, macOS, and Linux, and integrated "almost all of Brave's marquee features across all platforms," according to engadget.[11]

Business model[edit]

Brave uses its Basic Attention Token (BAT) to drive revenue.[12] Originally incorporated in Delaware as Hyperware Labs, Inc in 2015, they later changed their name to Brave Software, Inc. and registered in California, where the company is headquartered.[13]

In November 2019, Brave launched an Ad Network with a 70 percent revenue share to users.[14]

Critical reception[edit]

In January 2016, in reaction to Brave Software's initial announcement, Sebastian Anthony of Ars Technica described Brave as a "cash-grab" and a "double dip". Anthony concluded, "Brave is an interesting idea, but generally it's rather frowned upon to stick your own ads in front of someone else's".[15] TechCrunch,[16] Computerworld,[17] and Engadget[18] termed Brave's ad replacement plans "controversial" in 2016.

In February 2016, Andy Patrizio of Network World reviewed a pre-release version of Brave. Patrizio criticized the browser's feature set as "mighty primitive," but lauded its performance: "Pages load instantly. I can't really benchmark page loads since they happen faster than I can start/stop the stopwatch".[19]

In April 2016, the CEO of the Newspaper Association of America, David Chavern, said that Brave's proposed replacement of advertising "should be viewed as illegal and deceptive by the courts, consumers, and those who value the creation of content".[20][21]

In April 2017, TechWorld praised Brave's "great speeds and advanced ad-tracking controls", but said that its "extension functionality is still lacking".[22]


Basic Attention Token[edit]

Basic Attention Token Logo

The "Basic Attention Token" (BAT) is an open-source, decentralized ad exchange platform based on Ethereum.[23]

Brave Payments, which formerly used Bitcoin, allows users to tip websites and content creators (such as YouTubers and Twitch streamers)[24] with BAT tokens, akin to patronage services such as Patreon.[25]

Integration of BAT into an application involves implementing BAT Ads, a system that displays ads to users based on locally stored data. Ad targeting is performed locally, removing the need for third-party tracking.[26]

In an initial coin offering on 31 May 2017, BAT sold 1,000,000,000 BAT for a total of 156,250 Ethereum (US$35M) in less than 30 seconds.[23][27] An additional 500,000,000 BAT was retained by the team for developer and user growth pools, which is used to promote the adoption of the platform.[23]

Additionally, they received at least US$7 million in angel investments from venture capital firms, including Peter Thiel's Founders Fund, Propel Venture Partners, Pantera Capital, Foundation Capital, and the Digital Currency Group.[28]

In early December 2017, the development team disbursed the first round of its user growth pool grants. A total of 300,000 BAT was distributed to new users on a first-come first-served basis.[29][30]


  1. ^ "Company Overview of Brave Software Inc". Bloomberg. 4 April 2018. Retrieved 23 June 2019.
  2. ^ "browser-laptop/LICENSE.txt at master". GitHub. 29 June 2017. Retrieved 26 July 2018.
  3. ^ a b Cimpanu, Catalin. "Brave browser moves to Chromium codebase, now supports Chrome extensions". ZDNet. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  4. ^ "Brave's browser offers you a bit more privacy when searching online", CNET, CBS Interactive, 14 December 2017, retrieved 16 July 2018
  5. ^ Ha, Anthony (20 January 2016). "With Brave Software, JavaScript's Creator Is Building A Browser For The Ad-Blocked Future". TechCrunch. Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  6. ^ Lomas, Natasha (20 June 2018). "Blockchain browser Brave starts opt-in testing of on-device ad targeting". TechCrunch. Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  7. ^ Shankland, Stephen. "Brave advances browser privacy with Tor-powered tabs". CNET. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 27 September 2018.
  8. ^ "Brave browser goes 'full Chromium' by adopting Google UI". IDG. 16 December 2018. Retrieved 27 June 2019.
  9. ^ Tung, Liam. "Brave defies Google's moves to cripple ad-blocking with new 69x faster Rust engine". ZDNet. Retrieved 1 July 2019.
  10. ^ Brave (13 November 2019). "Brave Launches Next-Generation Browser that Puts Users in Charge of Their Internet Experience with Unmatched Privacy and Rewards". Brave Browser. Retrieved 15 November 2019.
  11. ^ Bonifacic, Igor (13 November 2019), Brave says 8.7 million people use its privacy-focused browser every month, engadget, retrieved 16 November 2019
  12. ^ "Brave Wants to Destroy the Ad Business by Paying You to Watch Ads in Its Web Browser". Gizmodo. 24 April 2019. Retrieved 23 June 2019.
  13. ^ California Secretary of State Business Search: Brave Software, Inc.
  14. ^ "Brave browser launches an Ad Network while blocking publisher's ads". PPC Land. 14 November 2019. Retrieved 14 November 2019.
  15. ^ Anthony, Sebastian (21 January 2016). "Mozilla co-founder unveils Brave, a browser that blocks ads by default". Ars Technica.
  16. ^ Perez, Sarah (1 August 2016). "Brave, the ad-blocking browser from former Mozilla CEO, grabs $4.5 million". TechCrunch. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
  17. ^ Keizer, Gregg (25 June 2018). "Brave browser begins controversial ad repeal-and-replace tests". Computerworld. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
  18. ^ England, Rachel (20 June 2018). "Privacy browser Brave pays 'crypto tokens' for watching its ads". Engadget. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
  19. ^ Patrizio, Andy (4 February 2016). "Benchmark tests: How the Brave browser compares with Chrome, Firefox, and IE 11". Network World. IDG. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
  20. ^ Murphy, David (8 April 2016). "Newspapers: Ad-Blocking Brave Browser Is Illegal, Deceptive". PC Mag. Retrieved 4 December 2019.
  21. ^ Edmonds, Rick (7 April 2016). "U.S. newspapers to ad blocker: Drop dead". Poynter. Retrieved 4 December 2019.
  22. ^ Mercer, Christina; Dunn, John E (26 April 2018). "The most secure browsers 2018". Techworld. IDG. Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  23. ^ a b c Russell, Jon. "Former Mozilla CEO raises $35M in under 30 seconds for his browser startup Brave". TechCrunch. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  24. ^ "Brave browser lets you pay your favorite YouTube stars". CNET. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  25. ^ Russell, Jon. "Blockchain browser Brave makes push to reward content makers and YouTubers". TechCrunch. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  26. ^ "Google and Facebook Too Can Be Disrupted". 8 December 2017. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  27. ^ "Javascript creator's browser raises $35 million in 30 seconds". Engadget. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  28. ^ Perez, Sarah. "Brave, the ad-blocking browser from former Mozilla CEO, grabs $4.5 million". TechCrunch. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  29. ^ "Ad-blocking browser Brave courts new users with free crypto tokens | VentureBeat". Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  30. ^ "This ad-blocking browser has some cryptocurrency for you". CNET. Retrieved 30 December 2017.

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