Skyfire is a web browser that loads websites through its own proxy server. Skyfire supports Flash, Ajax, QuickTime, video, audio, and other features of the "full" web. You can choose between the full web page and (if available) the mobile version. Skyfire is slow, its user interface is not very user friendly, and there's a long list of bugs waiting for a fix, but the current slow buggy Skyfire allows you to view content that other Symbian web browsers won't show you, so it's a useful addition to your phone regardless of its many shortcomings.
Good news: the long list of bugs is a tiny little bit shorter. Many Symbian users were bitten by a bug that made Skyfire "authenticate" forever, which made the browser totally unusable, but now Skyfire version 0.85.0.8084 is out. The Skyfire programmers promised that the authentication bug is a thing of the past, and they may be right. Since I updated my copy it connected without any trouble.
But disconnecting is a different story. When your (Wi-Fi) connection is dropped and you try to close Skyfire, the program tells you it's "disconnecting," and that message stays on your screen until you fire up the task list and tell Symbian to shut Skyfire down the hard way. Skyfire is unable to figure out for itself that it should close itself without waiting in vain for a dropped connection to come back.
The main advantage of Skyfire over other mobile browsers is its ability to display data hungry multimedia content, so for obvious reasons Wi-Fi is its number one connection method. Since Wi-Fi connections are dropped more often than any other mobile connection type, fixing the annoying disconnection bug should be a top priority for the Skyfire programmers.
Skyfire (on the fly install)
Skyfire 0.85.0.8084 on Mobile Castle (downloadable installer)
Update: Skyfire for Symbian is dead.
Sunday, 7 December 2008