SkyfireSkyfire, a start-up company, has spent the last 18 months to develop a new proprietary technology that now delivers web content to mobile phones at a speed that matches computer browsing. This revelation was made at the DEMO 08 conference. Skyfire’s CEO Bhandari claims that Skyfire’s success can be attributed to the development of a unique efficient protocol that their servers transcode every web page into on the fly. It is these pages, transcoded into a phone format, that allow users to view and transact online like they do on their broadband PCs.

Until the development of special browsers, mobile browsing has brought substandard WAP pages, second-rate versions of websites, persistent error messages, slow rendering of of images, and very unreliable transactions. The release of Skyfire not only addresses these pain points in the mobile online experience, but is certain to catapult mobile usage into mainstream in one step.

200801043_1.jpgSo what exactly does Skyfire do? The new Skyfire technology, currently in limited beta, promises to deliver seamless Web browsing to phones running on Windows Mobile versions 5 and 6. Its strong support for Flash, Ajax and Java technologies, allows a more fluid and richer level of user interaction. Users can watch YouTube movies, interact with social networks and listen to music without the customary breaks and pauses. It also offers bookmarking capabilities on particular areas of a web page for quick access. All in all, “the Skyfire browser will fundamentally change how people use smartphones”, Bandari says with confidence.

While other company’s products have penetrated the market, Skyfire’s edge lies in letting users choose their carrier network, many of which work on speedy 3G networks already. At present, Skyfire is working on releasing a version for Nokia’s Symbian platform. Versions for Google’s Android platform and the iPhone are hot on their calendar as well, as software development kits become available.

According to their website: Founded in April 2006, Skyfire is a venture-backed innovator in mobile web browsing with a mission to dramatically improve your browsing experience on mobile phones. They say that they created the only mobile browser that delivers both the speed and media-rich experience similar to the PC browser. For the first time, users can watch any video, listen to any music, socialize on any network and browse whatever anyone wants. Anything that can be done from a PC, can now be done from a mobile phone using Skyfire. If really true, this could have a profound impact on the way we use our mobile phones.

Might this technology be applicable to PC based browsing as well? Time will tell.


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