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mobile browser

This definition is part of our Essential Guide: A guide to modern mobile application development strategies

What is a mobile browser?

A mobile browser is one that is optimized for the small display screen and limited resources of a handheld computing device such as a smart phone. A mobile browser interface is simplified to display content in the smallest viable space. The browser software is as lightweight as possible to address memory and bandwidth constraints.

Mobile browsers connect to the Internet through a cellular network or a wireless LAN (local area network).  Some mobile browsers can display regular HTML sites, while others can only display websites that have been specially formatted for mobile browsers. Content optimized for mobile browsers is typically text-based or low-graphic and may be written in languages that were designed for mobile computing such as WML (wireless markup language) or CHTML (compact HTML).  Most current mobile browsers today can display regular HTML.

The first mobile browser was Apple's NetHopper, which was released in 1996 for PDAs. 

Here is a list of popular mobile browsers:

Bolt

Firefox for mobile

Internet Explorer for mobile

JB5

Myriad

NetFront

Novarr Vision

Obigo

Opera

Opera Mini

Ploaris

Skyfire

uZard

The first mobile browser was Apple's NetHopper, which was released in 1996 for PDAs.

 

Learn More About IT:
> Daniel Nations compares the mobile Internet and the regular Internet.

This was last updated in February 2010

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