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11/30/2010
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Flock Updates Social Media Browser

Like competitor RockMelt, Version 3.5 of the Mac and Windows app is based on Chromium 7.

RockMelt Social Web Browser Revealed
(click image for larger view)
Slideshow: RockMelt Social Web Browser Revealed

Less than six months after its last upgrade, social web browser developer Flock on Wednesday is scheduled to release a Chromium 7-based version of its Flock browser for both Windows and Macintosh.

Spurred by the early November debut of social web browser competitor RockMelt, Flock 3.5 delivers greater ease of use, faster performance, and more stability to its 9.5 million installed users, the developer said. Currently, both Flock products are in Facebook's Top 10 Desktop App list, according to Flock.

"We're seeing great overall growth in users and engagement, including 57 million new activities conducted within new Flock per day, and over 4 billion activities over the last four months," said Shawn Hardin, president and CEO of Flock. "Our growth is 100% user-powered: 83% of our users say they have already recommended or intend to recommend the new Flock browser to their friends and family."

Indeed, Flock compares its new browser head-to-head with RockMelt's offering, using a Google docs chart to demonstrate its version of Flock's strengths, including Flock's three-year history, business model, and integration with LinkedIn and YouTube. As of Tuesday morning, RockMelt had not posted a direct response to Flock's chart on its website or blog.

"Since our beta launch, we've received a lot of great feedback and have been working around the clock to add new features and boost stability and performance," RockMelt's blog said last week. "The latest version of RockMelt (0.8.36.74) is focused on improving stability by upgrading the underlying Chromium to version 7. We've also enhanced our Twitter and Facebook integration and sharing, and created a RockMelt-specific Gmail Notifier App."

With Flock, users can see all their social content -- including tweets, Facebook, and LinkedIn status reports, YouTube and Flickr content, and RSS feeds -- in the Flock Sidebar, instead of clicking through several layers. In addition, users can see everyone within the Sidebar to quickly get their updates.

In addition, with two clicks users can share updates and contents across social networking sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Users also may group friends in multiple ways -- such as by work, school, clubs, or interests. With "Social Search," people can view recent pages, favorite sites, Google search results, or other matches from friends' status reports, tweets, video uploads, or photos.

Since June 2010, the Flock browser has been cloud-based with an API, according to the developer. The Macintosh version supports both Leopard and Snow Leopard OSX. The PC version on Chromium 7 will be updated for current Flock users. Both versions will be available for free download at Flock's website . Flock 3 was based on Chromium 5, while the earlier Mac version ran on Gecko.

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