Feeds

Openwave vooms its browser

Waste time with us

Intelligent flash storage arrays

CTIA Openwave, which ships more browsers than anyone else in the world, has revamped its flagship. Few of the 300m Openwave browsers shipped last year are used very much, and that's something both the company and its carrier partners want to set right.

But plenty has changed since the last major revision, V7, three years ago. The latest offering, the Mercury Browser, supports high end features such as JavaScript, and also claims to be 25 per cent faster than the competition.

There's little shortage of competition at the high end, with trailblazer Opera being pursued by Access. Microsoft and Nokia have developed their own browsers, the latter based on the KDE engine also used by Apple.

But it's Opera's Mini browser, which runs on mid-tier phones, that has really upped the stakes.

Openwave's senior VP of software engineering Jon McCormack paid tribute to Opera's engineers, but pointed out that there's no such thing as a free lunch.

"Jon and the guys did a really good job with that product - but the economics just move around. A fatter browser needs a more expensive phone, while a thinner browser means a more complicated server to crunch those pages - and someone has to pay for that," he told us.

Opera still had to decide whether it would inject ads into each page or pursue a subscription model, he added.

"We're at feature parity with the Operas, Accesses and Microsofts of the world but we're able to eke more performance out of any combination of CPU and radio."

But while service driven mobile browsing, such as bidding on eBay, might make sense - wasn't the phone always going to be second best to the serendipitous time wasting offered by the real web? When network minutes are expensive, screens small, and pages slow to render, who'd want to surf for free?

"Phones are time wasting devices too - so in the sense that a mobile browser allows you to waste time it's a good thing," insists Jon.

"You can go off and browse in the five minutes you have between meetings - and we allow a carrier to monetize that."

Speed had been the priority, he said.

In other news from CTIA, Openwave's SmartWave division expanded its "Smart Radio" offering, a streamed music download service for Java phones over 2.5G and 3G networks. It's not to be confused with Visual Radio, which is an interactive overlay to FM, or digital radio, which is... well, digital radio. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Mighty Blighty broadbanders beg: Let us lay cable in BT's, er, ducts
Complain to Ofcom that telco has 'effective monopoly'
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Ofcom tackles complaint over Premier League footie TV rights
Virgin Media: UK fans pay the most for the fewest matches
FCC: Gonna need y'all to cough up $1.5bn to put broadband in schools
Kids need more fiber, says Wheeler, and you'll pay for it
prev story

Whitepapers

Go beyond APM with real-time IT operations analytics
How IT operations teams can harness the wealth of wire data already flowing through their environment for real-time operational intelligence.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Website security in corporate America
Find out how you rank among other IT managers testing your website's vulnerabilities.