Browser War II: Major Players On Stage
The major players are on the stage now, with releases ’sometime soon’ for most, and the mobile community has only to wait to catch some browsing goodness.
SkyFire promises a mobile experience similar to the desktop, is light on the CPU as it renders on the server side. That is the downside though. Someone can easily have access to what you are viewing. So for those with privacy concerns, this might not be the browser for you.
Opera has Mobile and Mini. Mini requires Java on your device to use and can be buggy because of this implementation. Mini also uses server side rendering. The current version of Opera Mobile is nice with the Tabbed Browsing and other features, but doesn’t pack enough punch for me to shell out some dollars for it. The upcoming version is positioned to change my stance though. With desktop-like browsing accomplished all on the device this appears to be the winner for me, but we will have to wait and see.
As of right now Mozilla’s Mobile Firefox looks like it wants to fight but no solid release date is in site. The super old version of it was nice to play with but had way too many bugs to be useful. The new version is a completely new beast and has one major advantage over SkyFire and Opera Mobile, it’s free. The downside is that it is open source and sometimes these projects take way too long to come to fruition.
There are other 3rd party browsers and plugins for PIE that enhance it’s functionality but none that complete the experience.
If you want to stay on track with Skyfire, sign up for notifications at their website.
Opera has a nice page about the upcoming Opera Mobile 9.5 and provides a sly download link for the current version 8.95 if you haven’t tried it out yet.
If you want to keep track of Mobile Firefox or even contribute to the project a good place to start is their Project Page. There are meeting minutes, bug tracking and to do lists galore for the devout.
Stayed tuned into AllShadow.com for full coverage of this war as it pertains to Windows Mobile Standard/Smartphone and the T-Mobile Shadow.
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