updated 09:30 am EST, Tue February 16, 2010
BlackBerry now has fast, accurate web browser
RIM drew attention at Mobile World Congress this morning by confirming and showing off a new web browser for the BlackBerry based on WebKit (video below). By using largely the same engine as Apple's Safari or Google's Chrome, the browser now loads pages much faster and is much more accurate. It can handle complex AJAX, CSS and HTML5, and is one of the few mobile browsers to get a perfect score on the ACID3 web standards test.
The new browser will also support widgets inside its view, including both BlackBerry-specific widgets as well as those using Java Intermediate Language. RIM hasn't said when it expects the new browser to be part of the BlackBerry OS or whether it will be available as part of a downloadable upgrade.
That a Webkit browser was in development had been confirmed ever since RIM bought Torch Mobile last summer and has been anticipated ever since. While still complimented for its messaging, the BlackBerry platform has been routinely criticized for a slow browser incapable of handling complex web code that enables complex web apps on platforms like Android or iPhone.