“A nice lightweight, quick little WebKit browser…” — that’s how the developer of the recently released SkyF1re Browser describes their iPhone browser for jailbroken iPhones. And while that’s certainly an apt description, the browser is so incredibly lightweight, that it might just float away into utter obscurity.
Although one must keep in mind that this is version 1.0 of the app, I couldn’t even get the address bar working on my iPhone. No working address functionality on a browser? That’s not a good thing.
You can type in the address bar until your heart is content, but the problems start to rear their heads when you actually want to submit the information that you entered in. Simply put, I could not.
The only way to actually browse, is to use the app’s default homepage, Google. You can submit a search in Google, and get around that way, but as soon as you want to go somewhere else, you have to go all the way back to Google and search for your next destination. I like to refer to this as grandma browsing.
Then there’s the lack of tab functionality, a staple with today’s modern browsers. Or perhaps it’s the lack of a dedicated search bar that’s got me wondering? Or Bookmarks. Or History. Or pretty much anything that you’d actually want to see on a browser to begin with.
One thing the app does tout though, is its supposed quickness on the browsing front, and the fact that it supports Frash (a.k.a. an alpha Flash player for the iPhone). Granted I didn’t notice anything quicker than what I’m used to on Safari, but it should be quicker due to the fact that it’s bare bones minimal, and features no tabs.
The Frash compatibility, while nice, doesn’t do anything for me, because it itself is extremely buggy and unreliable.
Although I’m a big fan of Safari, just due to the fact that there are tons of tweaks for it available on Cydia, there are other browser options available for iPhone users. At its early state, though, I just wouldn’t consider SkyF1re to be one of them.
Have you tried it? What do you think?