If you were to look at my iPad, you would see a folder entitled "Browsers". In there, you’ll find less frequently used browsers including Safari.
I’m in search for a browser that gives me all of the functionality that I want PLUS takes advantage of all that the iPad has to offer. My browser of choice sits in the launcher and is currently the Dolphin HD browser.
On the surface, it reminds me a great deal of the Opera Browser for Desktop. The opening screen even starts with a section called Speed Dial – frequently accessed websites. So, I’ve populated that with frequent clicks to get the job done.
An interesting section appears below the Speed Dial. Dolphin calls this Webzine – similarly to Speed Dial, you populate it with frequently accessed web resources. Dolphin then lets you browse the latest from the resource added. In the case below, I’m browsing my public Twitter feed as I write this. You won’t confuse this with a full Twitter client, but it’s nice to have open in a tab and just flip to for updates while doing other web browsing. Webzine is really nice for other services that are often cluttered with advertising. It just gives you the content.
And, that’s just to get you started. Other features make working in this environment very engaging.
- Full tabbed browsing;
- Swiping left and right reveals your bookmarks/history and your open tabs – it’s like having an extended desktop;
- Switch to a true full screen display;
- Support for gestures – it comes with a nice selection of defaults i.e. G – loads Google and you can add your own – this nicely augments the Speed Dial selection;
- A desktop mode so that you don’t have to identify yourself as a mobile browser when visiting a site;
- A private mode so that you’re not creating a history;
- Subscribe to an RSS feed from the current page invoking your Google reader;
- Ability to share the current page to Facebook or Twitter;
- Two keyboards – a URL Keyboard and the iPad Default Keyboard.
At this point, Dolphin really is a nice browsers with many features contained in the design. I like the ability to stay in the browser and not have to flip out to another app to get the job done.
Dolphin is a really engaging experience. I like how it has the feel of a browser specificially designed for a tablet as opposed to a browser that works like a desktop browser and just happens to run on the tablet. They’ve done a great job with this browser and the price is certainly right at free. You can download it from here. There are some features that would be nice like having an adblock for accessing sites that aren’t contained in your webzine.
I’d highly recommend that you download the Dolphin Browser and give it a shot. It is unique in design and really gives me a sense of what a tablet browser should be. (And, there’s iPhone/iPod touch plus Android versions!)
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