This article was published on November 18, 2010

Try This: iLunascape Lite. Intuitive, fast and tabbed browsing for the iPhone

Try This: iLunascape Lite. Intuitive, fast and tabbed browsing for the iPhone
Jeff Cormier
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Jeff Cormier

Jeff Cormier, a graduate of SMU and the TW School of Law, is the co-founder of C4 Universe, LLC. Desire to know more? Jeff Cormier, a graduate of SMU and the TW School of Law, is the co-founder of C4 Universe, LLC. Desire to know more?

TNW Quick Hit

iLunascape Lite for iPhone is an easy-to-use, fast, intuitive  web-browser featuring a unique interface and desktop-style tabbed browsing.

Hits: Simple, yet functional design.  Cross-device online bookmark syncing.

Misses: Only supports maximum of six open tabs and bookmark syncing limited to Lunascape and Firefox desktop browsers.

Overall: 4.5/5

The Details:

Safari Mobile is a nice browser on the iPhone, but it’s not perfect.  In fact, no alternative iPhone browser I’ve tried has been worth using exclusively over Safari.

Opera Mini, championed by many, is nice but after getting caught up in the launch hysteria, it was quickly deleted from my iPhone.  Personal browsing preference at present is Firefox Home, which allows one to view sites directly from Firefox Home, email them to friends or even open them in Mobile Safari.

iLunascape Lite (free), released today, has just disrupted my iPhone browsing experience forever, or at least until something better comes along.  Here’s why…

iLunascape Lite for iPhone , simply stated, is the best mobile browser available on the iPhone. The browsing experience is clean, intuitive, and super fast.  In addition to being fast, iLunascape Lite is filled with features which make it a truly great alternative to Safari Mobile.

The first thing one will notice when launching the app is the unique interface of iLunascape Lite.  The “InReach Interface” was designed to do the following:

“InReach Interface for iPhone locates tabs and menus down near the bottom of the screen so that you can easily browse with your thumb while naturally holding the device. Since desktop-style tabs tend to get squeezed on a small screen, we made switching between tabs fast and easy by adding a unique “thumb slide” capability, rather than forcing you to master a tap precision. You can also choose when to show the title, address, and tab bars to further maximize the limited space.”

Very neat and super easy to browse the web using only one hand. Noice the difference between iLunascape Lite and Safari Mobile below.  Safari Mobile’s user-interface is nowhere near as well-designed or as functional as that of iLunascape Lite.

When one opens multiple pages, iLunascape groups tabs and buttons at bottom of screen for simple switching, with desktop-style tabbed browsing with six open tabs supported at any one time.  Conversely, Safari Mobile requires one to swipe to jump from page to page.

iLunascape Lite is easy to use, but one will really notice enhancements in how pages are rendered and how quickly pages load when compared to Safari Mobile.  Sites visited loaded, on average two to three seconds faster on iLunascape Lite.  The speed is noticeable and lovely.

Other features of iLunascape Lite include:

  • Holding a link displays options such as opening link in a new tab
  • Tabs used in the previous session can be automatically displayed on the next start up
  • Online and offline bookmarks and bookmark syncing with Lunascape or Firefox desktop browsers
  • Screenshots are automatically stored in the iPhone’s Photos application

iLunascape Lite, in the bit of time I’ve used it, has won me over.  Certainly there are things that can be improved upon, notably bookmark syncing support for other desktop browsers and allowing users to have more than six tabs open at one time.

That said, iLunascape Lite is so much better than Safari Mobile.  The design, features and speed are top-notch.   The app is free, wonderful and one you should certainly try.  You won’t be disappointed.

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