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In late 2007, I purchased a Windows Mobile-based smartphone. The top issue I heard from friends before I made the purchase is that the browsing experience was nothing like the Safari browser on the iPhone. I knew that I wanted the ability to blog from the mobile if needed and so I wanted a device with a keyboard. The first month was exactly what my friends said it would be...miserable Web browsing.

Allen Stern

November 6, 2008

2 Min Read

In late 2007, I purchased a Windows Mobile-based smartphone. The top issue I heard from friends before I made the purchase is that the browsing experience was nothing like the Safari browser on the iPhone. I knew that I wanted the ability to blog from the mobile if needed and so I wanted a device with a keyboard. The first month was exactly what my friends said it would be...miserable Web browsing.I went on the hunt to find a better Web browser so I could post content no matter where I was. I found the Opera Mobile browser and after one use, I was totally hooked. It allowed me to write content because it supports JavaScript, something that the built-in IE doesn't (among many things that the internal IE browser lacks). The Opera Mobile browser costs $24, which seemed like a big investment, but after posting, replying, and handling administrative tasks while waiting for the subway, the investment provided significant positive returns. Perhaps Microsoft should acquire Opera just for the better browsing experience on their Windows Mobile devices.

Another sexy Web browser I've been using for the last couple of months is Skyfire. This mobile browser supports both Silverlight and Flash, which makes the experience even sexier. I can view and interact with nearly any Web content using Skyfire. I can watch a video on Youtube or my blog and view all of my stats applications and interact with them exactly as I do on the desktop. Skyfire also offers a good set of customization features, including a text reformatting option which sets up the text for optimal browsing on the mobile device. Skyfire forces all content through its servers. This doesn't sit well with me for various security reasons and therefore I've decided not to access any of my private or secure sites (banking, investments, PayPal, etc.) through Skyfire. While neither Skyfire nor Opera Mobile match up perfectly to the ultra-sexy browsing environment on the iPhone, I'd say both come pretty darn close. And when you add in the keyboard for entering content, I'd suggest that the three browsers would rank dead even.

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