David Pogue's take -- excerpts from the full review:
Google argues that current Web browsers were designed eons ago, before so many of the developments that characterize today’s Web: video everywhere, scams and spyware, viruses that lurk even on legitimate sites, Web-based games and ambitious Web-based programs like Google’s own Docs word processor. As Google’s blog puts it, “We realized that the Web had evolved from mainly simple text pages to rich, interactive applications and that we needed to completely rethink the browser.”
For now, it’s best to think of Chrome as exactly what it purports to be: a promising, modern, streamlined, nonbloated, very secure alternative to today’s browsers. You should do exactly what Microsoft, Apple and the Firefox folks will all be doing: try it out and keep your eye on it.
Because every now and then, Google’s fresh approach ends up dominating its once much bigger competitors (See also: AltaVista, Lycos, Ask ...)