Amazon overhauls Kindle Fire's Silk browser interface
Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is rolling out a refreshed version of the Kindle Fire tablet's Silk browser, promising a faster, more responsive user experience.
The Amazon update--its first major Silk release in close to a year--touts a redesigned user interface built to make the browser easier and more intuitive to use. Highlights include a new tutorial identifying key features in the new UI, like a left panel with links to Most Visited pages, Bookmarks and History; an Action menu integrating one-button access for sharing content via email or other apps, as well as a search option for targeting specific words on a page; and a Reading View button that removes links, advertisements and other distractions.
The revamped Silk also brings performance enhancements to the underlying rendering engine, enabling a more fluid and elegant browsing experience. Amazon has additionally published a Silk Developer Guide.
Amazon launched Silk in Sept. 2011 in tandem with its first Kindle Fire tablet. Silk promises to accelerate the mobile Web user experience by caching and compressing data and images--the browser lives on both the tablet and Amazon's own EC2 servers, an approach that consumes less bandwidth than other tablet browsers and translates to faster page and multimedia load times.
Earlier this month, Amazon's Appstore for Android began accepting HTML5-based Web applications and mobile-optimized websites, enabling developers and publishers to merchandise their efforts alongside native applications optimized for the Kindle Fire and other Android-powered devices.
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