Skyfire iPad Web Browser Brings Flash Support And More

A few years ago, a lot of iPhone users were frustrated by Apple's refusal to allow apps into the App Store that duplicated the efforts of apps that were built into iOS. Thankfully, Apple has bent a bit on that over the years, and while there's still no good way to remove the Stocks app from your device, and still no great third-party solution to the Mail app, at least the browsing arena has some competition. The version of Mobile Safari on Apple's iPad is easily one of the most robust mobile browsers in existence. The original Mobile Safari really set the bar for smartphone browsers when introduced on the iPhone. But times have changed, and Mobile Safari doesn't have the commanding lead that it once did.

In fact, many would probably prefer the browsing experience on Samsung's Galaxy Tab, if only due to the ability to load Flash websites. But now, the iPad can finally support Flash without any funky hacks. How so? Skyfire. Skyfire's iPhone browser was a huge hit, despite the fact that it's not free. In fact, Skyfire's servers crashed under the load the first time it was introduced to the public, and the company has over doubled capacity to handle the expected load from the iPad release.

This week, Skyfire's iPad browser was released into the App Store at $4.99, bringing Flash website support (it loads Flash sites on the Skyfire end and then streams it back in HTML5), a Fireplace social networking aspect and an integrated Google Reader. If you're burned out with Apple's stance on Flash, it looks like most of your problems can be solved today with a single download. Merry Christmas, indeed!