Microsoft has retired its web browser Internet Explorer after 27 years
Internet Explorer’s popularity was dented by the launch of faster browsers such as Chrome and Firefox, as users seized on new applications to navigate platforms including Google Search, Facebook and YouTube. The rise of smartphones then arguably delivered the fatal blow, with Apple’s pre-installed Safari browser and Google Chrome on Android phones helping to shift internet access and usage into the mobile realm.
As a Mac user I remember the frustration of web sites being Internet Explorer only, which was compounded when I started using mobile devices.
I do like this animation of web browser usage over the years (you certainly see at one point the dominance of Internet Explorer).
I actually quite like Safari on the iPad, but was intrigued by what the new Google Chrome App had to offer.
I generally use Chrome more than Safari when using my desktop Mac, but until now there wasn’t that choice on the iPad.
After installing Chrome and starting the app you have the option of signing in with your Google account.
This to be honest is the only real reason for using Google Chrome so that you can sync with your desktop browser.
Trying out some of my usual sites I found it worked fine.
Of course there is no Flash support, but a lot more sites realise that and are offering their content in alternative formats. A lot more of the video on BBC News for example now works on the iPad, regardless whether you use Chrome or Safari.
Despite the fact that this is Google Chrome, it relies on the Safari WebKit as a result the performance is similar to mobile Safari. As a result I was disappointed when I tried Google+ on Chrome. I got the same “mobile” browser default that I do on Safari. I prefer the desktop browser version of Google+ over the Google+ App and really don’t like the mobile browser version of Google+.
If you really do like Chrome, alas you can’t using iOS change the default browser, clicking links in Twitter apps or Mail will result in Safari opening.
On the desktop I use multiple browsers, so for me it makes sense to have a similar capability on the iPad. So far I like the synchronisation with the desktop version of Chrome and I think that will be the key reason I will use it.
Engadget reports on the release of Opera Mobile 9.5.
Today, it’s out for a beta 1 launch. In other words, it’ll be buggy but likely far more useful than the browser already installed on your touchscreen-based (PocketPC) WinMo professional phone. The initial release includes support for double-tap zoom, landscape flip, off-line page save, tab-like browsing, auto-URL complete, and a Google-search bar to name just a few of the 9.5 features.