Most of the browsers for the Android mobile platform are serviceable, but each one has some drawback. Skyfire for Android stands out as one of the best in this category -- even in beta it blows away the competition. Here's what you should know about version 2.0 of one of the fastest mobile browsers available.
Skyfire 2.0's features
Skyfire 2.0 offers some unique features to the mobile browser application, which include the following:Optimized video: From the browser you can launch a mobile-specific, optimized video experience. Although the videos might take a while to load, and the quality will be directly related to your connection speed, I find the video offered in Skyfire to be much better than video I've seen in any other mobile browser. Social Sharing: From Skyfire you can share websites with your various social network accounts. (This is very similar to Google Chrome's Share button.) From this button (Figure A), you can share any page on Friend Stream, Twitter, Facebook, and more. To get to this menu, simply click the device's Menu button. Figure A
Skyfire has the fastest rendering times and the best near-desktop rendering you will find on a mobile device. When I opened the page blogs.techrepublic.com on the same phone with three browsers, the page rendered in Skyfire in nearly half the time of the closest browser. Here is the time recorded for each browser:
- Skyfire: 7.678 seconds
- Default browser: 17.636 seconds
- Opera Mini: 13.133 seconds
TechRepublic page rendered in Skyfire.Figure D
TechRepublic page rendered in the default browser.Figure E
TechRepublic page rendered in Opera Mini.
Give Skyfire a try and see if you agree with my conclusion that it is the best mobile browser for Android.(Note: Skyfire is also available for the iPhone. You can download Skyfire 2.0 for the iPhone here and see how it looks in this CNET gallery.)
Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website getjackd.net.