Mobile

Apple approves SkyFire iPhone browser with Flash video support

Skyfire Futurama screenshotMobile browser developer SkyFire has seemingly done the impossible by getting its Flash video-capable web browser approved for Apple’s App Store.

The SkyFire 2.0 browser was submitted for Apple’s approval in early September, and at the time we argued that Apple would have very little reason not to accept the browser. Now we’ve learned that it will be available for download at 9 a.m. ET Thursday morning for $2.99 from the App Store, according to a report by CNN.

SkyFire’s big claim to fame is its ability to play video embedded on web sites with Adobe’s Flash technology. But since Flash still isn’t supported on the iPhone, the browser goes through some clever hoops to play Flash video: SkyFire’s cloud-computing technology allows the browser to translate Flash videos in real-time to Apple-approved HTML5 standard. The company says it adheres to all of Apple’s video and browser guidelines — including the use of a WebKit browser core and H.264 adaptive video streaming.

SkyFire 2.0 also makes its Flash video streaming very efficient. The browser compresses video data by about 75 percent on average — making it easier to stream videos without buffering, and saving precious battery life in the process.

The browser won’t play video from Hulu, CNN notes. It also won’t be able play other Flash elements like games, or let users view websites that rely on Flash for navigation.

You can view a demonstration of the app below:


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