It looks like RIM was serious about getting the blackberry browser on par with the iPhone’s by next summer. Torch Mobile, a company renowned for their web – kit based mobile skills, announced not long ago that they will be joining RIM on the mission to make the blackberry browser the top mobile internet experience on a phone you can find. If you navigate to their website, you’ll find the following;
Torch Mobile is excited to announce that our company has been acquired by Research In Motion (RIM), one of the most renowned mobile technology companies in the world. Our team of developers will join RIM’s global organization and will now be focused on utilizing our WebKit-based mobile browser expertise to contribute to the ongoing enhancement of the BlackBerry® platform.
Torch Mobile’s team of highly skilled developers has been actively involved in Open Source development and includes contributors, Committers and Reviewers of the WebKit project. As part of RIM, these developers will continue to be active participants in the WebKit development community.
That’s pretty exciting news! When you look at their most popular product, The Iris Browser, it’s not a surprise to find that RIM has chosen Torch Mobile above other mobile web developers. Some of The Iris Browser’s features are:
- WebKit Rendering Engine
- Customizable Interface
- Touch Screen Control
- Advanced HTML & CSS Support
- Zoom & Tap Function
- Multiple Windows and Tabs
- Input Methods
- Software mouse cursor
- Special Effects
- Rotating Devices
- Advanced Security Features
- Pop-Up Blockers
- Advanced mobile key navigation
- HTTP cache optimized for low disk usage
- SSL and authenticated proxy support
- Styled Form Controls
- Netscape plug-in API
- SVG, XPath and XSLT support
- History Auto-Complete
- Efficient storage of bookmarks and cookies
- Bookmark editor, carrier specified list
- Favorite icons and history
- XHTML 1.x mobile profile support
- Customizable about: pages
When you look at all of this, one can only hope that Torch Mobile will put as much time and effort into the blackberry browser as they did The Iris Browser. Interestingly enough, Torch Mobile is used to working on browser’s with a limited environment, meaning that with all the capabilities of the blackberry, the result could be a masterpiece. There are even some rumors that the new blackberry browser will contain flash player support, but I think it is unlikely.
The Iris Browser is only available for Windows Mobile and Qtopia phone’s, but since both of them are touch based phones, I’m guessing Torch Mobile’s experience with these kind of devices will make browsing extreme on the blackberry storm.
You can watch a video of the Iris Browser in action Here.