SkyFire 2.1 for Android

Posted on June 24, 2010

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29 Apr – Skyfire Beta for Android was released. It was then reported it will be the fastest browser as it uses the power of “the cloud” to do a lot of the heavy lifting of web content.  This translates to lower CPU usage, reduced web traffic to/from your phone, and opens the door for a LOT more video content. Skyfire (the browser) utilizes Skyfire (the servers) to act as a sort of pre-rendering proxy to help speed up web surfing, and translate supported videos into a format native to the phone. Since the video translation happens on the Skyfire servers they can add support for additional video formats without requiring an update to the software on the phone.  Reviewers had found the browser to indeed be very fast but buggy as it was beta stage. The pinch to zoom worked, but not as well as the stock Android browser, and the text-reflow functionality also wasn’t up to par.

24 Jun : Today Skyfire 2.1 for Android is officially release. I downloaded it and within 10 seconds it was up and running on my Nexus. Skyfire auto imports in all my bookmarks from the default Android browser. The claim that it will be the fastest browser seems true in the initial test runs I did on several web videos .  Stuttering, lagging, hangups, and freezes on Youtube videos is very very much reduced and in some sites is non-existent. I have earlier in my blog commented that with the latest version 2.2  Froyo build FRF72  – the improvement in speed and browsing experience of the default browser  was already impressive . With Skyfire 2.1 now available, users now had another choice of a equally fast if not faster browser on the Android phone.

Web reviewers had commented that ” where video is concerned, Skyfire 2.1 is now outperforming Flash 10.1 on Froyo devices in battery life, video quality, and overall speed ( see video below ).
Skyfire has a lot of potential, specifically around web media and videos. Let’s face it, there’s a lot of Flash video that’s out there that isn’t on YouTube. SkyFire uses an Opera-like pre-rendering metaphor to intercept these videos and render them into a format that you can play on your Android device. Since the video translation happens on the Skyfire servers they can add support for additional video formats without requiring an update to the software on your phone.
You’d think all this pre-processing and re-encoding would slow things down, and  it does add an extra second or two to the initial page-load times, but overall, pages load in basically the same amount of time (or a bit faster), and video, well, there’s no comparison”.

Skyfire 2.1 beta is free and can be downloaded now at the Android Market.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwOEofc1VIc&feature=player_embedded

TechnoBuffalo review and comparison with default browser on Android and iPhone 3GS
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1SgVsGE1G3E&feature=player_embedded

Pocketnow.com review of the beta version:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ABfmgSmpG0w&feature=player_embedded

Links:
http://www.androidguys.com/2010/06/23/skyfire-21-released-outperforms-flash-101-video/

http://pocketnow.com/software-1/skyfire-21-for-android-now-available?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+pocketnow+%28pocketnow.com%29&utm_content=FaceBook#comments

http://www.technobuffalo.com/blog/android/skyfire-for-android-ready-for-download