Android Vs. iOS Browser Speed Test Inherently Flawed

Yesterday the blog-o-sphere was all afire over a report which pitted iOS Safari against Android Chrome browser in a huge number of tests, showing a considerable victory to Chrome. However, tech pundits and people with technical knowledge have now come forward and said that there were major problems with how the test was run.

The problems boil down to the fact that they didn’t use the built-in browsers, but instead crafted custom apps to use the OS’s browsing capability, which lead to them falling afoul of iOS’s new Nitro JavaScript engine, which doesn’t work outside of Safari.app. Both Jim Dalrymple and John Gruber have discussed this in detail above my pay grade.

Meanwhile CNET managed to get a statement out of Apple, who seem less than impressed with the whole situation:

“Their testing
is flawed. They didn’t actually test the Safari browser on the iPhone. Instead they only tested their own proprietary app, which uses an embedded Web viewer that doesn’t actually take advantage of Safari’s Web performance optimizations. Despite this fundamental testing flaw, they still only found an average of a second difference in loading Web pages.”

Blaze have issued a statement in response, admitting that if you use Safari you will see better results, but they were testing the embedded browsers, which is all they ever claimed.

It’s a strange situation, and one that leaves us hoping that Apple will roll out these improvements to embedded browsers too.

  • Rowan

    I don’t know about this, my girlfriend has a Dell streak and I tested how fast the T-Mobile 4g was against my iPhone 4 and it was the same.