iOS 8 Should Make Third-Party Browser Apps Faster

Apple’s Nitro JavaScript engine is one of the primary reasons why Safari has been able to outpace alternative web browsers for iOS, but that’s about to change. With iOS 8, Apple is no longer restricting use of the engine, letting developers seize upon the opportunity to speed up their browsers. iOS 7 had API restrictions in place, but one developer noted these were removed in iOS 8.

Alternative browsers to Safari

The news was shared by Vicki Murley on Twitter via Mike Beasley at 9to5Mac.

A few teasers: API is the same across iOS and OS X, and the new WKWebView on iOS is running JS just as quickly as Safari.

This is huge news for users who prefer Google’s Chrome browser or any of the countless options available in the App Store. While most users still prefer and use Safari, they too will benefit from this change. If you use Facebook or Twitter, those apps routinely display web pages within the app. Those browsing experiences should improve, provided the developers take advantage of Apple’s Nitro Javascript engine.

We noted on numerous occassions that Apple’s iOS 8 feels more open and this is a perfect example. By removing restrictions, developers are now empowered to create better, faster app experiences. As we start to see more of iOS 8, there are so many of these under-the-hood improvements that have real world benefits.