Android

Skyfire 2.0 beta for Android brings Flash goodness, puts others on notice

SkyfireThere's a new browser in town, and it's a doozy. Not content to wait around for Adobe to finalize their Flash 10.1 offering for Android, Skyfire today released version 2.0 of their namesake browser in beta form. Utilizing server-side compression similar to how Opera Mini speeds up page loads, Skyfire has long been a staple browser for WinMo and Symbian fans as they looked for a way around their horrible native browsers, and it's now available here for all versions of Android.

The big draw here for Android users is the ability to playback Flash videos, thanks to a new feature called SkyBar. Activated with the Menu button, SkyBar pops up at the bottom of the screen and gives the option to play videos on the current page, explore similar content from around the web, or share the page via most popular social networks.

Instead of being embedded in the browser, where it would be too small for comfortable viewing, Flash content is converted by Skyfire's servers and then sent back as compatible fullscreen videos. In the toolbar at the top of the page, there are options to change the user agent from mobile to desktop without having to restart the browser.

After playing with Skyfire a little bit this afternoon, I have already deleted Dolphin and Opera Mini (once again) from my Nexus One. Skyfire has replaced them, and I look for it to get even better as it nears full release status. One little quirk that I hope gets tweaked is the pinch-to-zoom, which lags a bit but does nothing to dampen my thoughts on the browser.

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Chris King

Chris King is a former contributing editor at Pocketables.

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6 thoughts on “Skyfire 2.0 beta for Android brings Flash goodness, puts others on notice

  • Avatar of whydidnt

    I downloaded this earlier today and it is pretty slick. My only complaint is the jerks at Hulu appear to be blocking Skyfire, so can’t use it for that. If they could find away around Hulu’s ignorant firewall this would be the browser to rule all others!!

    It really irritates me that Hulu blocks us from using their site in a web browser…Isn’t that their entire service in a nutshell? Watching videos in your browser is what they do, why the heck do they discriminate against certain browsers?

    Reply
  • It really doesn’t make any sense why they block the mobile browsers, unless it’s the carriers doing the blocking. I used to use the WinMo version to watch Hulu, but I think they have currently blocked it again.

    Reply
  • Avatar of Joseph G. Mitzen

    This SkyFire doesn’t have the option to misidentify itself as a different browser like… um… Opera? ;-)

    Reply
  • It’s the proxy servers that browsers like Skyfire uses, which Hulu blocks. Proxy servers are often used to try and view Hulu from outside of the USA, and thus Hulu blocks these.

    Reply
  • Avatar of medah4rick

    How is it watching tv on atdhe.net?

    Reply
  • Avatar of I Like Flash

    Too bad I can’t rewind or fast forward through a video. Kind of sucks when you want to continue watching a movie that you were watching earlier or just want to skip boring video intros.

    Reply

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