Dolphin Browser has just made the transition to iOS. It used to be Android only, and now iPhone owners can enjoy the smooth operating gesture-based browser by MoboTap.
iSmashPhone went hands-on to check it out. Hit the jump to read our review.
The browser runs fairly well on the iPhone so far, and it has all the essentials (Twitter, Facebook) pre-bookmarked for convenience. Where it truly shines is how easy it makes it to navigate with your thumb.
We often hold our iPhone or iPod touch in one hand and use our thumbs to control the device. This is something made easier with Dolphin Browser because much of what you need to do can be done just that way. For instance, swiping back will bring up your history, while swiping forward will bring up menu options such as settings, fullscreen, clear data and gesture. Gesture is where the magic happens.
The browser has some pre-defined gestures, such as forward, back, scroll to top, scroll to bottom, reload, etc. The main ones are worth learning, and they are all pretty easy to remember because they make sense (for instance, a down arrow, or V-shape, makes you scroll down the page).
To use a gesture command, you tap the hand icon at the bottom of the page and draw to activate a command.
At first, it didn’t seem entirely useful outside of being a neat way to navigate, but as we went on, it became awesome to know that we don’t have to go two-handed. It’s nice to just pull your iPhone out of your pocket and use it with nothing more than your thumb.
A nice bonus is that you can actually create your own gestures. This is extra handy if you want to create gesture-based shortcuts to take you to your favorite sites.
Here are all the pre-created gestures:
The above gesture commands will do as described by the list. You can also create new gestures easily with the “New” button on the top-right.
As you can see above, most of the commands make sense (goto top, goto bottom, back, forward, New Tab, Refresh, etc.) Google looks somewhat like a ‘G’ and Facebook a bit like a lowercase ‘F’ and so on.
Memorize those gestures and you will be rocking Dolphin.
It’s also nice that it’s finally available for the iPhone. One reviewer on the App Store page seemed to think so too:
Finally, it comes to iPhone and I can throw away my f**king HTC. Love the finger gesture feature, highly recommended!
Okay, flamewar starting posts aside, the browser is great.
The App did crash on us once. However, it was nice that it was willing to restore from the previous point as shown below:
It’s hard to say no to a free app. Even then, we sometimes do, especially when it’s a browser and Mobile Safari does a fine job itself. However, Dolphin loads pretty fast, and it’s built around gestures, which helps to make it one of our favorite mobile browsers right now.