I participated in an Influencer Activation sharing my experience with the Dolphin Browser on behalf of Influence Central for MoboTap. I received a PayPal incentive to thank me for my participation. All opinions and reviews are my own.
I’m one of those people who downloads one app after another on my phone. It isn’t that I use that many on a daily basis, but I’m always looking for an app that is just what I need for the situation.
Often, I’ll find an app that a friend has recommended and test it out, keeping it if it works for me or deleting it if it isn’t quite meeting my needs. Other times, I’ll discover new apps while searching the app store for a category. That’s how I discovered the Dolphin Browser.
The browser we use – especially on our phones – tends to be static and something we don’t think about much. We open it, search for what we need and it finds the web pages we’re looking for. That’s about all most of us expect from our browsers, but oh have we been fooling ourselves.
The Dolphin Browser – which is available for both Android and Apple devices – has taken that narrow minded thinking and thrown it out the window completely. Your browser should work much harder for your unthinking loyalty, and this one does. It’s fast and lets you train it to work the way you want it to work to make your life online intuitive and more efficient.
The Dolphin Browser has a ton of add on features that you can tie into the basic browser, but even the basic browser thinking is set up differently. Rather than bookmarks, you have a “speed dial” list you can customize so that he sites you visit most often are as accessible as the contacts on my phone I turn to all the time. You choose what goes there, though it starts with suggestions of sites many people tend to visit frequently. Unlike some of the bloatware on our phones, this is completely customizable, however, and if you aren’t an ESPN fan, you can delete that and not have to look at it every time you open your browser.
One of my favorite features is that night mode. Simply tabbing open the dolphin or the puzzle piece on the top right of the browser window opens the add-ons you’ve chosen for the Dolphin Browser. At night when that white screen is far too bright to look at without disturbing others – and ourselves – and your screen changes from a traditional white background to a dark background that doesn’t add too much light.
Want more? The browser has it. You can easily change themes to the color of choice, but that’s just fun and not truly special. More special is the ability to load pages that aren’t optimized for mobile to make them easier to read. If you have low bandwidth, you can choose to view pages without pictures loading. You can also choose to have pages load for reading, something that’s helpful for articles. The difference in the look of pages when choosing to use either of those options is surprising in the difference in readability and usability. Change your mind? It’s as simple as tapping into that puzzle piece and turning off the feature.
Along the same lines, there are some sites that just don’t provide the robust features you want when you are on the mobile version. While many have a button on the bottom of the site where you can change to desktop view, scrolling to find it isn’t always the easiest. Dolphin Browser has recognized that this is a common need, and there is a quick tab for the desktop view – which in my case makes it much easier to search my school’s online student directory for just one simple example. And yes, you can have as many tabs open as you want for all-in-one browsing. I know I can’t be alone in referencing one open tab while on another, right?
I have had fun finding and playing with the Dolphin Browser add-ons, and my favorite is the optimizer. Tell me that your phone running out of batteries isn’t one of the banes of modern life. This add-on allows you to quickly and easily optimize your phone so that all those pesky background programs aren’t taking up memory they shouldn’t and slowing down your browsing experience, among other annoyances. On that same screen, you can choose to optimize your battery. You have a bar that notifies you of exactly how much time you have left on your phone as it is, and you can simply tap and add minutes and hours to your phone’s battery life, preventing you from the challenge of trying to stingily hold onto that last five percent so that when your child calls telling you it’s time to be picked up, you still have a phone and not simply a paperweight. There are different settings for this, so that you can choose how strictly you want to shut down background programs and other battery draining uses so that your phone still works as you need it to. One of the features this shuts off is synching my Gmail, and each time I simply go into my email and tap to turn the synchronization back on. This uses a little more battery but is something that I “need” to keep, and it’s worth that slight battery drain to me.
Another fun feature is the sonar where you can shake your phone and open a voice activated search feature. It quite conveniently told me all the coupons available at a store as I went shopping this week and reassured me that the pharmacy was still open so that I didn’t waste a trip late one evening. The smart voice search is so convenient, especially when I’m on the go (not driving – just when I’m busy)!
Gestures is another super fun feature. Simply draw one of the recognized icons on the screen and you can easily close a tab, get help, and more. You can customize your own gestures and add ones for your common actions to save yourself time and energy. I’m a big fan of Swype technology, and this fits right in as an extension of that.
The Android version (yay Android users) has Flash Support that allows you to discover even more. Plus you can sync the Dolphin Browser with Fabebook, Evernote, DropBox, and more and share easily via so many connected apps whether that’s emailing myself a website I need to reference later, texting information about my daughter’s lacrosse game to my husband, sharing a great article on Facebook, and more. You can even sync your data across all your devices so that you can access your bookmarks everywhere without having to recreate them each time. I have so much love for the Dolphin Browser. That is super simple to access with a swipe from the left sidebar or just tapping on the star on the top left of the screen.
That’s just a quick glimpse at some of the features of the Dolphin Browser, and I’ll admit that I could play with this for weeks more and still uncover more neat features buried within it that can make my life easier. While the browser isn’t one that I had intended to change on my phone, the Dolphin Browder is one that now sits on my phone’s home screen, replacing the browser that came preinstalled on my phone. I hadn’t intended to replace it, but when you discover all you’ve been missing, it becomes an easy solution.