Skyfire has released a new version of its eponymous mobile web browser. It’s still a beta, but all of the earlier betas have been impressive, and the latest one is no exception.
I consider a high-quality browser to be absolutely essential, and Skyfire is one of the best available. It offers PC-like browsing, including playing in-line videos in a variety of formats, like Flash, Quicktime, Windows Media, and others.
I’ve recorded a video of Skyfire 0.8 in action, so you can see for yourself:
Text Entry Capabilities
The most important feature I didn’t cover in the video is the text-entry capabilities.
The first versions of Skyfire were extremely limited in this area, which made it basically useless for Gmail, online forums, and lots of other tasks. That’s all changed with Skyfire 0.8. You can now write emails to your heart’s content with it, or make posts in the Brighthand forums.
Skyfire is server-based web browser. When you’re using it, you aren’t actually visiting web sites on your device. You’re doing so with a web browser that’s located on a remote server, which does the heavy lifting of processing the page and then presents a picture of the page to your mobile device.
I’m explaining this to point out that this is inherently a not very secure method of web surfing. It’s probably not appropriate for accessing your bank account. But then, accessing your bank account over a wireless connection of any kind probably isn’t a very good idea.
Get It Now
At this point, Skyfire 0.8 is only available for Windows Mobile. This browser is also available in version 0.6 for Symbian S60, but the 0.8 version will be released shortly.
Skyfire has begun migrating current 0.6 users to the new 0.8 version, and new Windows Mobile users can download it directly from www.skyfire.com.
It’s completely free, but you have to be a U.S. resident to get it.