Skyfire mobile browser reaches UK


Skyfire, a mobile phone browser for the Symbian S60 and Windows Mobile 5 and 6 platforms, has arrived in the UK.

Previously, the browser was only available to users on Skyfire's waiting list, but since beta 0.8 it was made available to anyone with a compatible device in restricted markets. With the release of 0.8.5 beta this has now been extended to the UK thanks to the addition of a local server farm.

Skyfire operates in a similar manner to Opera Mini in that all pages are processed on Skyfire's servers before being passed over to be rendered on the device - so the presence of a local processing server has a big impact on performance. Pages are shown zoomed out and the users can then zoom in on the area they wish to view. The company said that it has customised the browsers start page for UK users, with shortcuts to popular pages such as

The browser's key advantage over its competitors is that it can play flash video and Java content from popular sites such as YouTube and Facebook. Back in August, Apple was ticked off by the ASA for claiming that the iPhone gave access to the "full web", when in fact it can't play back Flash or Java content.

"Consumers in the UK have been promised the real web' on their phone real fast' only to be disappointed by slow rendering, no Flash support, error messages, watered down WAP pages or second-rate mobile versions of their favourite site. Now, folks in the UK can get the "real web" the PC web on the go," a company spokesman commented on its blog page.

Users with a compatible device can try out Skyfire for free by going to on their mobiles.

Benny Har-Even

Benny Har-Even is a twenty-year stalwart of technology journalism who is passionate about all areas of the industry, but telecoms and mobile and home entertainment are among his chief interests. He has written for many of the leading tech publications in the UK, such as PC Pro and Wired, and previously held the position of technology editor at ITPro before regularly contributing as a freelancer.

Known affectionately as a ‘geek’ to his friends, his passion has seen him land opportunities to speak about technology on BBC television broadcasts, as well as a number of speaking engagements at industry events.