BOLT

BOLT browser, which up until now has been in a private beta, is now available to all for free in the Android Market. Version 3.0 brings many improvements to the highly touted speedy browser, just as its name suggests.

The Webkit-based browser claims that website loading times can be 25% - 50% faster than its competitors, which is significant.

New features coming in the 3.0 update include a new social tab on the homescreen that allows you to share more easily to Facebook, Flash and HTML5 video playback with compression, web apps for websites like Wikipedia and Twitter and a simplified UI.

Other features of BOLT browser are:

  • Tabbed browsing, URL auto-complete, a download manager and web history
  • Ability to save webpages for offline use
  • Support for Facebooks apps such as Mafia Wars
  • Text copy/paste
  • Full support for mobile security standards

To download BOLT 3.0 for free, please follow the links after the break. To discuss the browser further, sing out in our Android App Forum.

Source: BOLT

 

Reader comments

BOLT browser now out of private beta, available on Android Market

33 Comments

How about you folks do a head to head comparison\performance breakdown of the more popular browser apps: Stock vs Dolphin vs Bolt vs Whatever else is appropriate? That would be helpful.....

I too think this would be a great thing for AC to undertake.

As long as the comparison was based MEASURABLE performance benchmarks, and real world features, compatibility checks both with common web sites, and the Android OS.

Too often browser comparisons descend into touting gimmicks with a vocal following, like non-standard gestures, or color schemes or other "feels good in your hand" sort of stuff.

Example: Yesterday I installed the NineSky Browser. Its yet another wrapper around the WebKit browser core. It was fast. But copy and paste into and out of the browser was abysmal, virtually non functional. Yet it gets rave reviews based on speed alone.

So yeah, bring on the reviews, just don't let it get hijacked by people who overlook major faults just because its "not stock".

That'd be a good idea to do a comparison.

I like Dolphin and all, but everytime I have to install and set it up I feel like I'm breaking the spirit of a goddamned wild horse. It just has too much craziness enabled right away that's annoying.

Like Dolphin, but it has been crashing on the last 2 phones I have owned. Not all the time, but enough to annoy.

Hate to admit this, but the stock browser
is by far the better out of all. Miren, opera, dolphin,
Etc. I always go back to stock. Imho

Do (a lot of) people really use addon browsers with Android?
I have Opera installed but never use it unless a page/site is being funky with the stock browser.
Used Bolt a lot on my old feature phone (Impression) but only because the AT&T browser just flat out sucked.
But my native Android browsers have always suited me fine so I never understood the appeal of Dolphin etc. My only complaint is allowing only five windows open at a time..

I have tried every browser mentioned by the comments above. And for me, the stock browser on my Tmobile Vibrant outperforms every one of the "add on" browsers.

Out of the ones I tried, I found Dolphin to actually be the worst of the bunch, with Skyfire a very close 2nd. My stock browser does exactly what I need and does it well. No add ons for me please!

Before android I used to be a big BOLT fan on my blackberry, cause the BB stock browser was a big pile of poop, but now BOLT looks like a big pile of sh*t compared any of the other browser options on the market specialy BOAT BROWSER and DOLPHIN...So after installing it and did some testing all I have to say is PASS...Too slow, graphic rendering no bueno and loading time is like IE from windows 98...

I, too, used it on my BlackBerry way back when because it was superior to the BB OS stock browser. However, I just downloaded it and installed on my Incredible, and I like stock (and also xScope Pro) better. It was mega slow starting up, and it didn't give me an option to import my stock browser bookmarks at all. Images look weird - like the verizonwireless.com site. It all looks squished versus the stock browser. And why is the name all caps? Do I need to scream "BOLT!" every time I say its name? LOL

I would like to see a real review of it (comparing it to the desirable features of other browsers) like others above have asked. That would be super helpful in showing me why I should care that BOLT was released for Android.

I like dolhpon. The gestures are great. I can refresh, go forward, backward, home, go to bookmarks, find in page, change user agent, go to top of page or bottom of page all with simple gestures without having to go through menus.

The stock browser doesn't even have a home button. It is just too light on features that save time but don't really add to the size. Having to use so many keystrokes to get to bookmarks or little things like that annoy me. Changing the user agent requires diving way into the menus.

I've tried Bolt, but just found it to be slow and redundant with the stock browser. On a disclaimer, my stock is very different from most. I'm running Miui ROM and the stock is similar to dolphin.

With that said, I like the CM7 stock browser the best...simple and very functional. Dolphin full and lite are kind of slow, and opera which is my second option (particularly for video) i find a bit clunky when trying to navigate.

Why wait for AC editors to do a comparison? Download both apps and try them out for yourself!

I for one am doing so because I'm still using a Moto Droid (1st gen). I need to know what works best on my phone with my mods, not what worked in general or with hardware and configurations someone else uses.

Well, I am waiting because (a) I don't know what "top shelf" browsers are even available beyond stock and the Dolphin HD one everyone raves about but I didn't like, (b) I couldn't possibly find the time to evaluate all the features to see which works, which is faster, etc., and (c) I only have my one device on which to test. AC should have a dozen devices on-hand, right? I'm not going to be using this same phone for much longer, I'd wager, and I'd like to see how they do on newer devices with dual-core processors or at least more RAM.

If they would add tabbed browsing, one touch for home page, etc. I would probably use the stock browser simply to save space on my Evo 4G. Until then it's Dolphin for me. Works great on my Evo and the one time a had a problem I got a very quick response to email with the fix. I also LOVE Dolphin's speed dial and webzine features.

Just gave it ago...still needs more improvement such as using system bookmarks and still not as quick as similar browsers such as opera
..good 1st release though

I have tried opera, miren & boat mini, I have to say boat mini by far is my favorite browser in terms of speed & functionality

I'll stick with xscope or dolphin ... Sorry bolt, just not feeling it yet, but keep working at it and you'll get there! On a side not though, how is opera vs. Xscope or dolphin?? I haven't tried opera yet but am curious, just don't feel like doing my own trial run ya know? Lol, yes I'm lazy I know :-P

From my simple test of loading NickJr.com (with my daughter watching) on my Incredible using stock and then using BOLT, I can see BOLT makes my phone crawl - even the home key takes 3-4 seconds to take me home with NickJr loaded on BOLT. Wow! Stock works fine. Also, the NickJr site looks totally spread out with tiny images, while the stock browser formats all the images and stuff tightly and makes them big enough to still read the text. BOLT seems to be a downgrade from stock (to me) so far. I am sure there's some feature that it wins on versus stock, right?

Why does BOLT have an entire week of history shown (but with nothing under any days except today) already, when I just installed it?

Why can't I import my stock bookmarks? I can import from a file, but not from stock? The xScope Pro browser I got free from Amazon imported them from stock when I installed it.

Do these gigantic rows at the top for search and address really stay visible all the time? There goes part of my viewable website screen space.

I have tried using bolt since the beta testing and i gotta say its an ok browser... if and only IF you need to view non mobile content cuz you can get it to not load it if you have it setup right which makes those linked facebook piccies easier to see and all.... that said that function makes the browser slow since non mobile content seems to load like rubbish in the browser... it takes forever to load even though i'm sticking it on a 20 mbps cable connection on a Wireless N signal right near the router... so yeah its an ok browser but wouldnt replace dolphin or stock at all...