How Do You Use Your BlackBerry: What browser do you primarily use on your device?

By Adam Zeis on 30 Jul 2010 02:04 pm EDT


 BlackBerry Browser Options  

With BlackBerry 6 hopefully not too far away, the shiny new WebKit browser will be upon us. We'll finally have a better browsing experience and be able to hold our heads high. As it is now, the only real options are the default BlackBerry browser (which I don't mind but some really despise), Opera Mini and BOLT. Each has its own pros and cons and caters to different users. Before we get the good stuff in BlackBerry 6, we want to know which browser you primarily use. Are you a native browser kind of guy/gal? Or is a 3rd party browser more your style. Vote in the poll and then leave a comment letting us know why you use what you use.

Adam Zeis Adam Zeis "Mobile Nations Content Strategist" 3740 (articles) 2892 (forum posts)

Reader comments

How Do You Use Your BlackBerry: What browser do you primarily use on your device?


I usually use the native browser but sometimes I go with Opera when the site I want to visit just doesn't render properly with RIM's default browser.

...and BOLT for the rest of it.

But I am slowly starting to let go of BOLT... JavaScript enabled and image quality set to low really allow the native browser to perform fast enough for my needs.

Are you talking about the option that say 'enable javascript support prompt before:' and then it has some other options like 'closing browser on escape' and so on? What will this do to the browser and what else could I do?


I like that twitter and facebook have an option in the menu to open with Opera Mini. But I use the native to view and for downloads or youtube.

Despite the fact that the native browser is utter garbage, it is far quicker than any available 3rd party browsers and is thus a necessary evil on my Bold 9650. No option to connect directly via TCP and forced use of BIS download size limits?!?! WTF?!?! Get with the program RIM, we're more than halfway through 2010.

I use Opera Mini for browsing. Much faster. When it comes to DL apps or hitting a link then I have no choice, but to use native browser. If I can help, I try to avoid the native browser as much as possible. Hopefully webkit browser will undoubtedly improve performance. Surprise to see the native browser leading with such a margin. Maybe people are unaware of other 3rd party browsers, then possibly people using an older BB too. Maybe should poll what BB people are using? I'm using Storm 2 9550 Verizon.

Can't believe people are using the terrible native browser. No wonder people are switching to android and iphone. If it wasn't for opera, I wouldn't own a Berry anymore.

I was a long time Opera user, but the cursor glitch forced me to look at other options. Once I did, I found myself really liking the native browser once I took some time to learn the shortcuts for easier navigation.

That's pretty much what happens if someone sends me a link or a get a link from work. It's much faster to just get to the closest PC.

Strangely enough, I use the native browser even though it is slow. I downloaded Bolt for times when the native browser won't render the page correctly. Like when I am trying to respond to this poll about browsers. The native browser doesn't show the polling panel, but Bolt does. I think its because I like how the native browser keeps everything looking simple.

I would use opera mini because its just that much more efficient but unfortunately I can't get BIS to work with it which is why im so excited about the new BB webkit browser.

Used to always use Opera Mini on the 9000 but with the 9700, I find I use the native browser more. It's generally faster (especially if I'm connected over wifi), renders nicer and better scalability (zoom in and out to different degrees vs. Opera's two levels).

The fact that there is no way to save bookmarks using Bolt kills it for me... I don't want to have to re-program bookmarks every time I wipe my device.

If I'm checking mail links and browing the web, I use the native brower. I do all my banking with Opera because of the rendering of information.

I don't like the native browser at all, it's too slow. When I had my Curve 8350i, Bolt didn't work right so I used Opera. Now with my 9650 Opera doesn't work right so I use Bolt. I really like Bolt, except the font is really small and I don't care for the split screen. Other than that, it's been working fine.

Bolt has a recent can open web pages in tabs, toggle back and forth, and pages open native...pretty also for my BB...should be faster on a better BB.

I use Bolt for reading blogs, online mags etc because of tabs so that i can have 3 tabs open and have some reading while on the train. I use the native browser when i need to do seraches and less intensive reading...when I get the slider with OS 6 and all the goodies then the native browser will be my one and only (fingers crossed)

I use Bolt because it's much faster than the native browser, due to the fact that it connects via Direct TCP, thus bypassing RIM's proxy. It also displays the whole webpage, not a stripped down version like the native browser does, and is able to do so without running out of RAM.

I use Bolt because it's much faster than the native browser, due to the fact that it connects via Direct TCP, thus bypassing RIM's proxy. It also displays the whole webpage, not a stripped down version like the native browser does, and is able to do so without running out of RAM.

What can I say, a lot of people make bad comments about the native OS5 browser. But for what its worth, it does its job ok, and it can handle MOST sites no problem.

Its main issue is its slow, lacks tabbing and renders some pages poors. Mainly ones with complex tables and HTML code.

But the webkit browser aims to solve all those issues so its no problem.

I use the native browser most often. Opera Mini 5 sucks royally IMO...I enjoyed 4.2 so much more. The only reason I keep it around is because of the tabs.

I tend to switch off depending on which browser gives me the best experience for the page I need to view. I usually start with the native browser and then go 3rd party. I tend to rely upon Bolt for non-mobile friendly sites more than Opera, but I find Opera easier to use.

What really sucks is that only the people with certain BB's will be able to utilize WebKit.....right? If so, that is BS. Our office just spent thousands on new 8530's and will be damned if we will spend thousands more to get new devices.It is a business orientated environment but 99% of the people would like a better user experience. I hope RIM has something up their sleeve to be able to spread the os6 love to every device with os5 even if they dont have the 512./ end rant

I use the native browser, but I use bolt to play mafia wars on facebook. I also use uZard Web P to play flash games like farmville.

For the most part, I use the native browser. If the website doesn't open properly with that, I usually try Opera Mini next. I'll use Bolt as a last resort.

Some sites work better with different browsers. I bookmark the sites into whever browser works best for that site. Most of the time, the native browser or Opera Mini can handle most of my needs.

i find the BB browser is the best of them all, i tried Opera but it crashes constantly, Bolt is good but doesn't work with some pages.

Usualy using native BBBrowser but sometimes also uZardP Browser because its supports Flash. Works pretty good via TCP and Wi-Fi but vvideo streaming is a bit laggy :) Besides its a good browser and im waiting for the newest version.

Check out my Twitter @wojtas25

...if i'm connecting via wi-fi then the native browser works ok for me on my 9000 but prefer Opera if i'm not able to connect to the wi-fi, its much quicker when out and about and the tabbed browsing is a must these days imo. The cursor glitch in Opera is annoying so whenever I come across that then i'm back to the native browser...If I had to choose one then it'd be Opera but ultimately need both until I get my webkit device. Never tried Bolt.

I can't vote in this poll. On my 9630 I used Opera Mini and it was superb. I'd never have gone back to the native browser. Now I have a 9650 and Opera Mini was overly sensitive and incredibly difficult to control. I switched to Bolt and that won't work on the 3g network...only on wifi. I'm not sure where the problem lays, but either way I'm stuck with the native browser until webkit.

Bolt is the only one that does everything I want without irritating me in one way or another. The native browser sucks with text-heavy sites and Opera Mini doesn't like the trackpad. Bolt occasionally has some rendering issues, but that's more than made up for by how usable it is in comparison to everything else out there.

It also doesn't hurt that it's a lot faster than the native browser with damn near everything.

I was using mostly Opera at one point until i read an article on the article gave some tips on how to speed up the native browser. (1)go to the native bwoser select options-browser configuration and uncheck support javascript box, (2)select general properties and change the image quality to lower(faster), (3)still in general properties select repeat animations and change to 10 times.. These tips made a major improve and allow me to rock the native browser a lot more. I would have to say that the native browser is still slower than Opera, but try it out and sound off..

I totally agree. It is amazing what a little research can uncover. 1 thing that always had me go to Opera was the way it rendered text to fit the screen. But after researching BB browser shortcuts, I found out you can move the cursor near the top of the paragraph and hit "Z" to fit the text on the screen.

If im on the street or an area with no Wifi i use opera about 20% more than the native. If im in a area with wifi i just use my ipod touch.

the native browser on the 8100 with os 4.2 is as bad as it gets. bolt makes my 8100 bearable until i get the 9780.

I use the native because the others dont seem to respond to the touch screen very well. For example: a touch is seen as a click using opera. I have a hard time scrolling without accidentally selecting. If the touch screen input were the same on the other browsers as it is on the native, I might be more inclined to use them.

When I was using my storm 1, all I used was Opera Mini... With my Bold 9650 I use the native browser because bolt and opera cannot respond to the trackpad at all. Opera Mini freaking rocked on the storm, but on the bold 9650 its basically not usable. I've found that the native browser on the touchscreen isn't that great... While on the bold its actually O.K. With the latest build released from altell.

Native browser despite its short comings. I prefer it over both Bolt/Opera. I'm eagerly awaiting the new Browser! >_<

I used to use the Opera Mini Browser but ever since getting the 9650 it's almost impossible to navigate so I stick with the native browser now. Not great by any means but it does a good enough job for minor web surfing.
Still keep Opera Mini loaded incase I actually need to get on the web and the native browser isn't efficient enough to handle the site. Primarily if I have to log into my work email. Otherwise I stick with the BB browser.

Opera Mini 5.1. I love the tabs, the navigation in the menu is questionable and it sometimes chooses to ignore that I have a trackpad (only in the menus, the page cursor still works - really the only reason I ever have to do a battery pull on the 9700... Go figure!)
But I love the fonts it uses, and you CANNOT beat the fact that opera re-sizes the text so you never have to scroll left and right, while still displaying the full web page. How genius is that?!
Really couldn't be happier with opera mini, except for the menu situation. I'm not that excited about webkit, because Opera is all I need.
Bolt is okay, but I HATE hate hate to way the fonts look. Uzard is pretty slow and nad, but it's got flash, so I keep her around.

I personally use the native browser the most because it's the fastest. Besides that it doesn't do very much, no tabs or nothing. Opera is nice but it tends to lag a lot and scrolling around with my tracball on it is a nightmare. As for Bolt, it doesn't even work well for me. So native browser it is but I just wish it had more features.

Of all the third party browsers I've tried, I liked Bolt the best. However, I couldn't keep using because there's no 'Send To' feature, which in my mind is a glaring omission.

What if I want to email the page I'm currently reading Bolt? Did you ever think of that?

I like the native browser better than the 3rd party browsers on my 9500. I always give them a bash when they release updates, but they never quite work as well as the native browser. BOLT doesn't play videos properly, and Opera Mini just feels kinda slow and doesn't zoom very well (unless I'm missing something). I know I'm not gonna get the new WebKit browser, but I'm actually not that bothered about it. The old one does just what I need it to

I use Bolt, cause maybe its just my phone...but Bolt is way faster than any other browser available on the Blackberry. I can go on facebook chat with bolt and sure its very buggy but its so fast and it loads web pages way better than opera or the native browser can do anyday! Bolt is almost as good as a computers browser and I just dont understand why people would still continue to use such shitty browsers when Bolt is kicking ass and taking names every day! Hell im even typing this whole comment in the Bolt browser with my Storm1!!!
But I cant wait for RIM new browser cause its gonna kick some serious ass!!

I find myself using the native 99% of the time.. Many pages render pretty swiftly actually.. For the ones that don't I am never too far from a PC/Laptop/Netbook...

I'm quite surprised at the poll so far. Bolt for me is by far the best,based on the ability to view embedded videos and the speed of page loading.

I've been using the Bolt browser cos it's fast and it renders the pages quicker. From what I've seen from the leaks of the webkit browser, I'm planning on going back native once it comes out.

I've tried them all (several times for each) and keep coming back to the native BB browser. I just can't see the fascination with either Bolt or Opera Mini. With OM I found navigation and bookmarks awkward at best and mostly incomprehensible with little help from the app. With Bolt I was all over the place trying to find a font I could read. I'd set one font size and then it would change with the next website. So I always came back to my BB browser -- tried and true and reliable. Face it, I don't think the browsing experience on a BB is ever going to be the same as an iPhone or Android device. I'm waiting - skeptically - for the new Webkit Browser.

I use the native BB browser because it does what I need and does to reasonably well. I'm not a big Internet user on my device; however, I do like having it for the occasions that I have reason to go on the internet for some info.

You (Adam) really don't mind the native browser? I just don't understand how it could be acceptable for any mobile device produced in the last 6-12 months to take longer than 60-90 seconds to load a web page. I still use a BB Tour and love it, but the BB browser is, in my opinion, unusable.

Thanks for the poll though, it is interesting to see that most people still like to use it even though faster options exist, namely Opera Mini, which I voted for.

Betcha more people would enjoy the native browser more...I used to always rave about Bolt as it was a nice medium between native and Opera, but after taking off Java-script, native is by far the best, plus it prompts you when you need to enable Java....most pages don't require it Native for me, just wish it had tabs! Can't wait for os6 to come out though....

Ever since I was lucky enough to get VZW to swap my Tour for the Bold 9650, Opera does not work due to the sensitivity of the trackpad. I miss Opera and hopefully a fix will be out. Until then, I'm stuck with the Native BB Browser. I do love having the trackpad, and I figure it was a trade-off. Oh well...


I use native browser for most everything, heavily scripted pages or pages that work much slower on native are good with Bolt, and I only use opera for downloading really.

Never really had a problem with the native browser. To be honest though, I don't do that much browsing on my phone so the browser doesn't get much use but when I use it, it works fine.

I heard all the benefits from aftermarket browsers and used bolt for quite a while, I do love having tabbed browsing and to be able to view more web pages, but always seem to go back to the default bb browser.

I never warmed up to Bolt. Used to use almost 50/50mix of Opera and the native browser, and last time I was out of town I made a lot of use of the uZard browser because of its Flash capabilities; but recently deleted all of them to save room on my 9700 and settled for the native browser. It does what I need it to do, and that's good enough for now.

Tried Bolt on my old 8800 and current 9700, still didn't like it.

I felt uZard had similar look/feel to Bolt; but at least had Flash. Regardless, didn't use it regularly so deleted to save space.

LOVED Opera, going back to my 7290 days; but like others have stated, got a little frustrated with version 5.1.

As stated above, currently sticking with the BB browser because it is functional and does what I need it to do. Might reinstall Opera if Webkit doesn't come out soon.

Ever since I first got my hands(literally via storm :) on the Opera browser I go by all means possible to avoid Blackberries Native browser.
Opera just works for me, I do online banking, kijiji, Youtube etc etc and the saved login thing is great, the rendering is fantastic(granted jittery when scrolling) but I cannot STAND the native browser. I even went as far as considering uninstalling it and going Opera Commando, lol.

I never tried bolt so I cannot comment on that.

If Rims browser is anything like Safari, Dolphin and a side of Opera it'd be pretty solid, but as it stands I bought a used iphone 3g(NOT A TROLL I SWEAR, BEEN HERE FOR A WHILE, lol) I notice its fluidity and ease of rendering(via multi touch) if BB had one of them I would be pleased.

Annnnnywayy, OPERA numero uno for me. Mmk.

Easier navigation, tabbing, better screen fit, better interface. I just use my native browser when I have to download something.

I go with Bolt because its so much faster. I can load up a page twice as fast on Edge with my 8900 than my friend can on his 9700 with full 3G.

And the tabs are wonderful things to have.

The only thing I use the native for is youtube...for some reason Bolt is fail at it, even with the plugin its choppy and looks bad.

The Native browser works seamlessly with my Storm. Bolt and Opera don't. Bolt you have to hit BlackBerry button and "OK" to make it do anything. Opera Mini 5.1 at the moment doesn't work that well with my Storm. The disappearing keyboard leaves a white screen in its place with virtually no view of a webpage. If you rotate the phone back and forth, then you can view the webpage.

uZard is now available through App World (still free) which is interesting considering Opera and Bolt still are not!


I don't find that native browser that bad on the newer OS 5.0 builds. The native browser on and my Bold 9000 is actually pretty darn good.

It's either native or bolt for me. Opera mini five is great on the eye but was buggy on my blackberry. I use my blackberry mostly of looking things up quickly and good the job well and when this web kit broswer comes we'll won't notice 3rd party apps any more!

Native browser is fine for me. However, I have a feeling that I'm nowhere near as saavy as some of you here when it comes to BlackBerry. All I can say is that the native browser functions very well on my 9700.

What phone are those of you using that say the native browser is faster than EITHER Bolt or Opera???

I use Bolt 90% of the time...once in a while, if a site wont load on Bolt, Ill use the native browser....when I do, I usually set the phone down for a few minutes while the native browser loads the page...its PAINFULLY slow.

I have a Bold 9700, but even when I had an 8310 Curve, Bolt blew the doors off the native browser.

Bolt takes forever to load! Hangs up at either 20% or worse, 10%!!! Even the newest version still does this all the time. Opera loads blank pages at least a third of the time that I click a link. Native is the only one that ever loads the page I want in a reasonable amount of time. All three suck compared to other smartphones, but the native is the only one that actually does get the job done on my Tour.

I've tried Mini 5 on my Curve 8320 but had too many problems. It seemed to be lacking a lot of features that 4 had so I went back to version 4.

I used to run Opera on the PC so that I could sync the favorites. That worked great until the sync feature went to hell. It started making multiple copies of favorites and their folders and my pleas to Opera were ignored so I ditched Opera on the PC and live without favorites on the BB :(

Always used Opera mini 5 on my Tour but now I have Bold 8650. After reading these comments I took some advice and turned the java off the native browser. It makes so much more of a difference than I had anticipated. Sayonara Bolt.

Bolt makes my 9650 a pc with no stress with a wifi option to make the downloads even faster... Even with os6 I still keep the bolt app

i use all three i like oprea for its quick upload an download ability an bolt for full page like tmobile home page bolt is slower than the other two plus good video content an im trying uzard an so far its right nice as a matter of fact im using it on this post the BB browser i to i think it is slow but the most stable of the other three because when the other browsers cant do they all go the native browser

I use Opera Mini unless I'm auto directed to the BB browser by some link. They have all improved from where they came from. Still I'm waiting for the webkit browser to come. May be we can get at least that on the 9700 if we don't get the full OS 6.0.

I use mostly the native browser, but their are some pages of which Opera just loads faster & better in which then I would use Opera mini.

I used the native browser on my blackberry 100 percent of the time. It always met my needs. I know that it gets a lot of heat because it isn't as good as the other browsers on other platforms. But I didn't have any major gripes wih it.

The native browser is horrible. Bolt is the only one that works with remote program scheduling for Dish Network. However, I prefer Opera for most things. The native browser loads itself faster than Opera, but that's not saying much. The native browser just doesn't render most pages properly at all.

The way some people use their bbs is way to hard on them. You can't expect a small 3g network and a miniature computer(yourbb) to perform amazing like your desktop at home. Keep your searches simmple! The only complaint I got , WHERE DO I GET mp3s(free)--- muchas gracias, from oceanside,san diego, CA

I use the native browser, but, I would use either Opera mini or Bolt more is text wasn't so tiny, even with changing preferences. So I continue to use native until I get a web page function that cannot work with native. Thank goodness OS6 is supposed to work with my 9700! I wonder how the new browser will affect the future of Opera and Bolt?