This week the mobile browser Skyfire released it’s long awaited 1.0 version, for use with smartphones, taking the company out of a hugely successful beta period that has seen 1 million people downoad the free service.
Skyfire is free to download at: www.get.skyfire.com
The service is currently available in the UK, USA and Canada, and runs on Windows Mobile (smartphones and PPC) and Nokia N and E Series (Symbian S60, 3rd Edition) phones. With its release yesterday, thousands of people lit up on fire with excitement for Skyfire and have been reporting their experiences on Twitter, with many tweeting that the service is the iPhone for other handsets. Skyfire is feeding the strong popularity and desire people have to get connected to the internet by their mobile phones, for instant access to social networking sites, viewing videos and reading their RSS feeds, among other features. Skyfire describes its service as bringing the full web experience to handsets, and it is the only mobile browser that supports Flash, Silverlight and Ajax, technologies that normally crash when attempting to access the internet from a handset.
Skyfire’s 1.0 release means millions more people will be able to catch up on Facebook, Twitter and watch YouTube, BBC iPlayer from their mobile, and this rich-media content experience bodes well for brands who are increasingly using the mobile internet for advertising and marketing. The excitement for this new milestone in technology captured the attention of mainstream media and bloggers, who have given the service rave reviews. Here’s what some have said:
“You see, Skyfire isn’t a ‘proper’ browser, more of a
content viewer, with all the serious processing handled by the company’s proxy
servers, the pages then being ‘rendered’ onto your phone. Just like the Opera
browser in fact, but with more whistles, bells and streaming video.” – T3’s
brings with it a host of improvements, such as improved navigation, zooming and
interaction and a faster launch, lower power consumption, and new search
functionality. Also, while the new version of the browser starts up, you can
begin typing URLs or search queries into the box at the top, saving time. The
company is operating a closed alpha for the BlackBerry platform, so that’ll
likely be next for release.” –Pocket-lint.com’s Duncan Geere
“Their browser is fast and responsive, and Skyfire’s goal is
to give a faithful representation of web pages that is equivalent to the
desktop browsing experience. One
important focus for Skyfire is in the area of video rendering… Skyfire’s
approach is to introduce their own video-crunching servers between, say,
YouTube and your Nokia N95. These
servers take full Flash (Flash 10) and then video transcode the signal in
real-time, giving a lower frame rate (8 frames per second), and a smaller
screen rendering for mobile. The
result is that the Skyfire browser can render an original YouTube page or Vimeo
page, or even blogs with embedded video, so that you have access to the entire
video catalogue, live on line.” –Martyn Davies, The Really Mobile Project
Watch The Phones Show hosted by AllAboutSymbian.com’s Steve Litchfield, for an interview with Skyfire’s VP of
Business Development Raj Singh, who offers extra insight to the browser’s features
and hints of what’s to come.
CNET was among the first outlets to announce the news yesterday, and just prior to Skyfire’s 1.0
launch, The New York Times named the browser as “App of the Week”.
My consultancy the Hai Media Group handled the UK/EU media outreach for Skyfire, teaming up with our fantastic US media partners VSC Consulting to orchestrate this highly successful PR 2.0 outreach programme.
Still finding more and more coverage results for Skyfire,