Despite Chrome's wide availability these days, most OEMs still make a customized version of the AOSP browser for use on their devices. HTC is no different, but it has taken the additional step of adding the Sense browser to the Play Store so it can be updated independently of the system. It even comes with some new features in this first Play Store build.
Dolphin, one of Android’s most popular third-party browsers, continues refining its Lollipop experience after initially rolling out a compatible release a month ago. Now, with Flash support, Android 5.0 devices should have feature parity with KitKat and earlier systems. In addition to the Flash upgrade, Dolphin has a grab-bag of enhancements that apply to all 4.x users.
The most fun new doodads are some Christmas-oriented themes.
Maybe not the most integral feature, but their themes are fairly well-done.
Here’s the full changelog:
[Add] Flash support and enhanced browsing experience on Android 5.0
[Add] Merry Christmas! Check out gorgeous Christmas wallpapers in Theme.
The internet is a mysterious and magical place full of Wikipedia rabbit holes, animated GIFs of Ron Paul, and cat videos as far as the eye can see. There are also plenty of ads watching which of those things you are looking at. If that makes you uncomfortable, maybe Ghostery is the browser for you.
The stable version of Chrome for Android has reached version 38, which came to the beta channel last month. Google hasn't posted a changelog just yet, but we can surmise what's going on from the last update of the beta. Update: Changelog below. This isn't going to be a radical departure for the app, but it might fix a bug or two that's been gnawing at you.
It looks like Facebook is again testing a new bit of functionality in its Android app with a subset of users. After the most recent update, people are suddenly seeing a built-in browser that loads timeline links rather than booting you out to a full browser. Whether this is a good thing or a bad thing depends heavily on how you feel about the Facebook app in general.
Developer Chris Lacy's last release was Link Bubble, an app that loads web pages in Chat Head-like bubbles that float on the screen until you need them. The newly released TapPath seeks to refine the mobile browsing experience even further by assigning different actions depending on how many times you tap a link.
When George Mallory was asked why he wanted to climb Mount Everest, he famously replied, "Because it's there." I imagine a similar disposition possessed the developer of Wear Browser (better known for AIDE) when he shrugged his shoulders and said, "Well, I guess I'll put a browser on that watch." I say this because I can't think of a good reason anyone would do this. Still, it exists.
We're lucky to have capable mobile browsers on Android these days, but the experience of poking around on the web is still flawed in a number of ways. You're often stuck bouncing between two or three redirects because of apps, mobile sites, and link shorteners. Then there's the fundamentally modal experience of only having one thing up on the screen at a time. The result is lots of wasted seconds waiting for links to actually resolve at the final destination. Link Bubble from Chris Lacy changes that by loading links in the background with an awesome floating browser. This app has finally launched, and here's what you can expect.
We often take mobile web browsing for granted, but sometimes the simplest of problems can turn it into a miserable experience. One of the early improvements to Android’s built-in web browser was a neat little feature that allowed text to re-wrap based on zoom level. It’s an obvious function, something that seems natural for reading more than a few words on a small screen. Unfortunately, a significant change in Android 4.4 resulted in the loss of this incredibly convenient capability for most web browsers and several applications. Not only does this affect browsers that rely on the built-in layout engine, it also applies to every app that relies on an embedded WebView.
Two new features are coming to Chrome for Android today, but they'll be old news if you have been running the beta of Chrome on your device. Bandwidth management and homescreen web shortcuts are both graduating from beta status, and will be showing up in the new version of stable Chrome.