Research in Motion Acquires Torch Mobile - WebKit Browser Coming to BlackBerry!

By Kevin Michaluk on 24 Aug 2009 10:26 am EDT
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Torch Mobile Acquired by Research in Motion

You've been wanting a new and improved WebKit-based Blackberry Web Browser? Well, it looks like it's on the way!!! Research in Motion has acquired Torch Mobile and as part of RIM will be working to enhance the BlackBerry platform and of course the web browsing experience. You can click the image above to jump on over and learn more about Torch Mobile and their existing Iris Webkit browser. What a great way to start the week - this is the kind of news we like to see! Excited much??

Update: What's good news for us BlackBerry users is bad news for others. Our friends at WMExperts.com contacted Torch Mobile who replied that the company will no longer be developing for Windows Mobile or Windows CE.

Topics: News & Rumors

52 comments

wpn00b

This is pretty freakin' huge. I was wondering if they were going to start from scratch or not... maybe this means a browser much sooner than later, eh?

mattdistro

Iris is my favorite Windows Mobile browser, so I'm stoked to hear this after falling in love with BlackBerry OS and my Tour.

gabrielzorz#CB

You must be retarded to fall in love with the blackberry OS. Even 5.0 is a piece of shit.

Bla1ze

wth took them so long? lol

storm83

Gotta give RIM credit. They are listening to us.

Dsmithjr

What devices do we think will be able to run this browser?

collin16

Probably every device that gets 5.0

TallyHo

.....on me getting the S2. Webkit browser with that big ole screen. Sweet!!!!!

preferredgeoff

This is great only if RIM can get a decent browser out in a reasonable amount of time, if they go as slow as usual they will be so far behind on the browser that they will never catch up. Isnt the idea in business to try to stay a step a head not 3 steps back. Oh ya it will also be useless if we all have to get new devices with more memory.

TallyHo

Thank you negative Nancy....

gabrielzorz#CB

You're right though. Just now RIM gets the smart idea to make a WEBKIT based browser? Dumb asses. What amazing innovation will the 'geniuses' over at RIM think of next; an Operating system that works? Or perhaps a touch screen phone that is somewhat functional/useful?

vdiesel

How do you know they haven't been looking into a WebKit option for some time now?

tpony

This is such great news. WHat a great piece of news for a Monday. Way to go RIM, I cannot wait to see the end product. :O)

cenloe

The important thing, IMO, is that RIM is listening to its customers. This new browser, with Flash implemented, will put the BB's browser ahead of the iPhones. Negative Nancy is right though, RIM needs to stay ahead of the game and this could be the start.

Syco54645

this is fargin awesome!

1magine

Only Lite version. Still no full flash. What about the 'complete web' don't these people ever get?

Barack-Berry

hopefully it will run on current bbs and we wont have to get new ones

just2043

I found this pretty good review of the Iris Browser for WM on youtube. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPPbC7gJMXg&feature=fvw

The_Engine

Love the way it handles tabs. Almost the card deck in Web OS, or the Album Cover display on I Phones or Slacker.

I am sure with Several months to take this technology and implement fro RIM OS they can improve the speed as well as implement full Flash, which is what RIM has promised.

mikegcox

I watched the review on YouTube, but I don't see how this is a better browser. I sort of like the way the BlackBerry browser renders pages into a readable column by simply pressing the Column View button. Maybe I just don't browse the web enough on my Storm to recognize the crappy browser that we have.

thablackguy#CB

Oh yeah!! ... storm 2 better have flash enabled browser now !!! there's no excuse for it anymore !!!

A£aric

Finally WebKit! This is frackin HUGE....

citi

I love flash as much as the next guy, but it's not ruining my "MOBILE" browser experience. Geez guys, no matter how much you want it to be a high performance computer, it won't be for a long time. Next you'll be complaining about the lack of dual processors!

mrrobinson

"Update: What's good news for us BlackBerry users is bad news for others. Our friends at WMExperts.com contacted Torch Mobile who replied that the company will no longer be developing for Windows Mobile or Windows CE." Oh snap!!!

thebikeman02

While I agree this is a big move for RIM and I hope it turns out well because if so, then I may end up coming back to a Blackberry much faster then I expected but RIM would do much better if they were proactive and not reactive. A proactive approach would mean they'd be able to compete step for step with the iPhone instead of trying to play catch up on it's web browsing capability. RIM makes a complete device, and so does Apple but to me the web browsing is why I have an iPhone and why I am reluctant to switch. I hope this yields a fantastic browser!

digital_cataclysm

Good news. :) That IS a nice way to start off Monday.

donald.aleshire

agreed! this is awesome news to start a Monday!

Now as soon as the Wifi Tour comes out, I am upgrading!

zeiroe

This is indeed good news. Sorry WinMo users.

mrich70

Can someone tell me what is Webkit and what does it mean for us blackberry owners???????????

gabrielzorz#CB

webkit is basically a standard for making a browser...any browser that isn't based on it is a piece of shit (like the blackberry browser) and any browser that does use it tends to properly render webpages etc etc. (like Safari or firefox and now IE exploerer 8 I believe).

Read for yourself, weakling:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Webkit

cwong15

Webkit actually has a relatively tiny share of the browser market. Originally limited to the Unix world, the source code became prominent because it was used in Safari and later Chrome. Firefox and IE do not use Webkit, nor Opera.

22hinds

The browser on the Storm is pathetic. My next phone may not be a Blackberry unless the browser is fixed.

Alexontherun451

"The browser on the Storm is pathetic. My next phone may not be a Blackberry unless the browser is fixed."

You are aware that your device is a BlackBerry and therefore you can download another Browser if you don't like the one that came with it, aren't you?

vdiesel

There aren't exactly very many good browser options. Actually, there are no good options. Opera Mini sucks, and so does Bolt (which is WebKit, btw). I think they're both worse than the BlackBerry browser on the Tour.

Massonite

Why worry WinMo fans? You have Skyfire and PIE 6. Better options IMHO.

Avink

Anyone know if this can just be a downloaded update or o ly coming on newer phones??

Berrydale

Although this company was just purchased by RIM, and this company has a history of developing for WinMo, why would they discontinue to do so? Wouldn't it make financial sence to keep selling to an existing customer base?

Secondly, for those commenting about this meaning the Storm 2 will, or should, have a much improved web browser, I am guessing the Storm 2 is so close to release and the time needed to develope this technology for the BlackBerry platform that it won't be available on anything BlackBerry for a while yet.

I'm not a tech savy person, so if I am wrong feel free to correct me.

1776-1865_RIP#CB

Considering Storm 2 has me thinking about switching back to a blackberry device (the first Storm did as well until I used one), I hope you are wrong . Sadly my guess would be that you are right considering the difficulty of porting applications from one family of OS to another. Then again we have no idea how long they may have been working on this, RIM can't possibly have just suddenly realized how far behind they are in the web browser realm.

Swoopster

...this will TORCH the competition. :-)

Actually: I don't know why I say that..I:m a fan of any decent mobile device; RIM's devices definitely have huge shortcomings in the broswer area...so hopefully this will up the ante a bit.

renegade37918

give us more app memory. i have 856mb of device memory going to waste and no app memory..congrats on the takeover

renegade37918

thinking the bold will be my last bb until they do something about memory and memory leaks.

AClayeJ

Two videos of the Iris Browser for anyone who doesn't know what it is:

http://www.torchmobile.com/products/iris.html

HighFive52

I'm using the LG Dare and thinking about upgrading to the Storm 2. My family had the original Storm and really liked them for the most part.

However, I wonder if buying a 3G phone this year is worth it if the 4G phones are going to start arriving next June. VZW is rolling out 4G in 2 markets this year and then many more next year.

studiorat

i think it makes perfect financial sense for RIM to buy this Company It now means the Piece of Shit Browser might get a much needed work over

youngberg1

OK its been almost a year... wheres the update!!!