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Firefox, Chrome & Opera Push Out Major New Betas

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The browser wars may still excite the techie more than the average web user (everything excites a techie more than the average web user *cough*), but within a few years they'll be just as intriguing as the latest specs on new smartphones. So listen up...

Three major new browser betas have hit the world today and they provide significant insight into how the masses will be surfing in the next few months: Firefox 3.6, Chrome 4.0 and Opera Mini 10.
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Firefox first and it brings the new Gecko engine (v1.9.2) into the mix for CSS, DOM and HTML5 technologies and much improved JavaScript, start-up and rendering performance (something it definitely needs). On top of this you'll find handy alerts about out of date plugins to reduce security risks, single click skin changes (including compatibility with Personas) and better web font support. As always, best check your favourite add-ons are compatible before you upgrade.

Next Chrome and version 4.0.223.16 (Google has never been a fan of upfront, or even user friendly, code numbers) brings yet more speed (something it probably doesn't need) and, most interestingly, Cloud-based bookmark syncing.


The video above does a pretty good job of explaining how this works, but essentially users will be able to synchronise their bookmarks between multiple computers in real time. This is an increasingly vital ability as we work on and own many different computers and should greatly help with organisation. Yes other browsers can do this too, but it is handy to have the industry's fastest browser add features not just raw speed for once.
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Lastly Opera has also released the first beta of its Mobile 10 browser for Nokia and Symbian/S60 handsets. Key most are a new look, integration of Opera's famed 'Speed Dial', tabbed browsing and a password manager. It will also play nicely with both touchscreen and non-touchscreen phones.

Surf's up! (I can't believe I just wrote that - still... 'excitement*)

Links:
Firefox 3.6 Beta 1 Blog Post
Google Chrome Beta Blog Post
Opera Mobile 10 Beta

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