Mobile
Commentary
8/24/2009
01:01 PM
Ed Hansberry
Ed Hansberry
Commentary
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RIM Acquires A Better Browser For Blackberry

RIM has just acquired Torch Mobile, which is the maker of the Iris browser. It is based on the WebKit rendering engine and RIM plans to integrate this into the Blackberry platform. It should substantially improve the browsing experience for the mobile handset maker.

RIM has just acquired Torch Mobile, which is the maker of the Iris browser. It is based on the WebKit rendering engine and RIM plans to integrate this into the Blackberry platform. It should substantially improve the browsing experience for the mobile handset maker.The Torch Mobile web page has been replaced with the announcement that includes the following information:

Torch Mobile is excited to announce that our company has been acquired by Research In Motion (RIM), one of the most renowned mobile technology companies in the world. Our team of developers will join RIM's global organization and will now be focused on utilizing our WebKit-based mobile browser expertise to contribute to the ongoing enhancement of the BlackBerry® platform.

According to the Iris product page, the browser if full of features. It includes tabbed browsing and supports multiple windows, has a zoom and tap feature for handling those large desktop pages, supports CSS, a software mouse, rotating screens, a popup blocker and more.

With devices like the iPhone, Pre and Android already shipping with advanced mobile browsers, and Windows Mobile about to launch their new browser in a big way when WinMo 6.5 ships this fall, RIM's browser offering was looking like a throwback from yesteryear. Iris will put RIM back in the game when it comes to surfing the web from a tiny screen. The only thing that I consider important that I don't see mentioned is support for Flash. If I had to guess, that is something RIM, Torch Mobile and Adobe are surely discussing though.

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