Quick Review – Skyfire Browser (beta), comparison with Opera Mobile, VGA screenshots

The much liked Skyfire browser is now available more widely and especially to the ones living in US, Canada and UK getting special attention. But, it works fine for other countries too. Just go to get.skyfire.com and download it. Do note that for the Skyfire site to recognize your device, you must make your device recognize as Pocket PC (which is the default setting of IE mobile)

The best part: youtube works flawlessly

Well, this was the first thing I did as-soon-as I loaded up Skyfire: load Youtube.com since it promises to let you see youtube in the webpage itself. I must say that they are successful. The quality is great.

Comparison with Opera Mobile

These days, many OEMs and Carriers are bundling Opera Mobile with their devices to provide the users decent mobile experience. So I thought that the comparison was much required.

Here is the screenshot of ApoTheTech.com opened in Skyfire. Note that the text is not readble in the page-overview. So, one can hardly make out the text written.

Now the same webpage rendered in Opera Mobile. The screenshot speaks the truth itself. Also, you cannot zoom-in with the scroll wheel of HTC Diamond in Skyfire, the way one can do in Opera Mobile.

Double tapping any area in Opera Mobile zoom in and wraps the text around the screen (in VGA devices). This is not done in Skyfire. Here is the screenshot of area zoomed-in. See how the texts nicely wraps around the screen for easy-reading.

Unfortunately, this is not the story in case of Skyfire. Also notice that the images are also not clear like Opera.

However, skyfire does provide an option to wrap the text around the screen and it does infact wraps the text around the screen, but it keeps it that way even in zoom-out mode! This feature is not done correctly at all. The whole feature is pointless so far.

However, I did like the great speed at which the page was loaded. It simply blows away the Opera Mobile in terms of speed. I should say that the winner is:

  • Skyfire if you want speed
  • Opera Mobile if you want quality browsing

It also comes with a nifty Today plugin which lets you do web search from the today screen itself. It uses google for searching.

However, it won’t run on the newly released WVGA Windows Mobile devices. This includes HTC TOUCH HD and SE Xperia X1. Owners of WVGA devices will have to wait a bit more to enjoy the amazing skyfire browsing experience.

We should not complain much considering the fact that it is still in Beta and I hope that it gets better in the upcoming/final versions.

As I said before, it is still in Open Beta stage and one can grab it for free for the time being. Get it from get.skyfire.com and visit the following link for more details.