October 11, 2011 | by Andrew Kameka
Bolt debuted on Android earlier this year as a semi-private beta. It was big, glitchy, and didn’t feel nearly as fast as the name would imply. However, developers were quick to adapt and listen to feedback to improve Bolt Mobile 3.0, which is out of beta and now available for free in the Android Market.
The BOLT Mobile Browser 3.0 for Android is available now for devices running Android 2.1 or later. Developers claim that Bolt offers 25 to 50 percent faster loading times against other Android browsers, a boast we haven’t confirmed yet. It’s possible considering that Bolt is a WebKit browser that increases speed by compression.
The app is “optimized for small and efficient data transmissions,” so when a user visits Website.com, Bolt quickly condenses information before sending it to the phone, leading to faster load times. Similar techniques have been used by popular browsers like Skyfire and the upcoming Amazon Silk browser loaded on the Kindle Fire.
Speed chasers can also get Flash and HTML video compressed using Bolt 3.0. A “Social Tab” will make it easier to share content on Facebook and specialized web apps for other sites like Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube optimize performance on the mobile device. Download from the Android Market to get a closer look at the browser and see if it’s good enough to replace what you’re currently using.