Safari 5 marks numerous improvements over Safari 4, and sees Apple putting HTML5, unsurprisingly, in the centre of attention. Greater HTML5 support is one of the key features of the new Safari, with Apple saying…
“Web standards are the future of the Internet. The world’s most innovative browser, Safari continues to lead the way in support for HTML5.”
With the company pushing support for HTML5 for their mobile devices, it seems as though the web standard is going to be getting a lot more attention than Adobe’s Flash from Cupertino…
Safari 5 is powered by the ‘Nitro’ Java Script engine, meaning that Java Script on Safari 5 is executed 30% faster than it is on Safari 4. Apple only released speed improvements in this area for Mac OS X, so there’s no word on how much faster Windows users will find the updated version.
Mac users, however, can be safe in the knowledge that Safari 5 is 3% faster than Google’s new version of Chrome when executing Java Script, and over two times as fast as the latest version of Firefox.
These figures are certainly encouraging, but Google’s Chrome browser market share is increasing and is being developed at a far faster pace than Safari, so we may see changes in some future updates that even the playing field a little. Likewise, Firefox 4 is touted for release in November of this year, so these constant developments will only make Mozilla, Google and Apple work harder still on improving performance in the browser.
Bing Search Engine
We heard yesterday that Apple have officially added Bing to their list of search providers on the OS, with Steve saying “Microsoft has done a great job on this”. It turns out that he likes it so much, Apple have made it an option in Safari 5 too. That’s right, you can now choose between Google, Yahoo and Bing when setting your default search provider.
Reader is a great new feature, which tempts me to use Safari 5 as my main browser again. When you’re reading an article online, Safari 5 can detect that you’re viewing an article and offers you a “Reader” mode.
All you need to do is click the small button on the address bar, and you enter Reader mode. The page you’re currently viewing dims, and you’re given a great view of the article without any ads. It has its own dedicated scroll bar so you can read the full article, all pictures are present in the window, and you can choose to email or print the article right from the Reader.
I’ve read a number of articles using Reader in Safari, and I love it. It’s by far the best feature in the new version (one of the few new features that you can actually see!), and something I hope to see appearing in other browsers and perhaps the Apple iPad as well soon? To me, Reader is the big selling point of Safari 5.
Safari 5 is available for download now and it’s certainly good for users to have a choice when it comes to web browsers. If you’re running Mac OS X, just bring up Software Update, and it will be installed for you. Mac and Windows users can download Safari from the Apple website too.