The race for the best mobile browser is just about dead even. Android's browser has certainly competed with its Webkit cousin in mobile Safari for several versions now, partially from borrowing bits and pieces of Chrome code. (Anybody remember this demo from Google IO 2010?) But while the browsers might have been fairly level under the hood, Safari's definitely had the edge in what the end users see, with scrolling and zooming that's buttery smooth.
With the introduction of the Chrome browser on Android (currently available in beta form), the mobile browsing playing field has been leveled that much more. Behind the scenes, things are running as fast as ever. And out front, on the display, the Android's browsing experience has taking another evolutionary leap forward.
We've got a quick comparison video and some more benchmarks after the break. We're not looking for the most scientific of results here -- though the benchmarks speak for themselves. Really, it's the feel of the Chrome browser on Android (and, again, remember that it's still a "beta" product, for what that's worth) that we're most interested in.
Click on through to the other side, and be sure to check out our pals from iMore.com for their thoughts on the Chrome-Safari showdown.
Youtube link for mobile viewing
But that's not to say Chrome's got Safari beat. The iPhone 4S browser still has smoother panning and zooming. Not greatly better, but is noticeable.
But, as we're having to remind ourselves, Chrome's in beta. It will get better. And if this but the first version of Chrome we get to use, we're excited to see where things stand six months to a year from now.