Use of app instead of mobile Safari makes browser speed test flawed?

Use of app instead of mobile Safari makes browser speed test flawed?
Yesterday we reported on a test that tracked the speed of the browser on the Apple iPhone 4 against that of the Android flavored Nexus S. The test was conducted 45,000 times on 1,000 different sites and allegedly showed that the Android browser was 52% faster than the iOS 4 browser.

Many were surprised by the results, especially in light of JavaScript improvements recently made to mobile Safari. According to those who studied the contest, the reason why the JavaScript improvements seemed to have no effect during the test was that mobile Safari was not used in the competition. Instead of using the actual browser, the testing was done using Apple's own proprietary app, UIWebView, that bypassed the improvements made to the iOS browser. Apple had developed the UIWebView to allow web browser functions to be used within an app but the app does not include the improvements made to the actual browser itself.

So now it seems that there is a legitimate challenge to the results. Blaze can re-do the tests using the actual Safari browser, or someone with plenty of time on his hands can develop their own test for measuring which browser is faster. In the meantime, the record book that shows the Android browser 52% faster than mobile Safari will have to include an asterisk next to the results for now.

source: AppleInsider

Related phones

iPhone 4
  • Display 3.5" 640 x 960 pixels
  • Camera 5 MP / 0.3 MP VGA front
  • Processor Apple A4, Single core, 1000 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB
  • Battery 1420 mAh(7.00h 3G talk time)
Nexus S
  • Display 4.0" 480 x 800 pixels
  • Camera 5 MP / 0.3 MP VGA front
  • Processor Samsung Exynos 3, Single core, 1000 MHz
  • Storage 16 GB
  • Battery 1500 mAh(6.00h 3G talk time)

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60 Comments

1. BaiGanyo

Posts: 308; Member since: Feb 07, 2011

Oh, now we have the excuses just rolling in. Don't get the result you want? Just blame to test. Typical apple and apple crony mentality. Nothing but excuses and justification....

13. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

Well you can't really pretend that you're surprised. You Android users do the same thing. iPhone is successful because of Apple's advertising, or because of their name, because of their iPods/computers, because people think they will look cool, because they're fanboys, because people are stupid, because people can't think for themselves. How about iPhone is successful because it's a good phone and people like it. I myself don't really believe the tests either. How come we haven't seen 52% faster speeds in any head to head browser test with iPhone 4 and Nexus S?

21. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

but.. those are the biggest reasons the iphone is successful. is it a great FEATURE PHONE? yes. But its not a smartphone. they have trendy advertising, many people admit to buying them to look cool, apple fanbuys buy everything apple.. hell they have to to make it work properly, the bulk of people are stupid and cant handle doing things themselves, and yes people actually like the phone.

23. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

Those aren't the reasons. That's just the justification. How is iPhone the feature phone when 3/4 Android devices are feature phones? I use to hear good arguments from Android, but as more dumb people buy Android phones, all I'm hearing is customization customization customization and "making your phone yours". When choosing a smartphone, I don't consider that the most important feature. The feature phone thing is a major rationalization. And there are fanboys but I don't think they make the bulk of iphone sales. And what about the Android fanboys. There's someone on this site that has purchased every single Android phone on Verizon's lineup. Pretty pathetic. And just like you're probably going to choose Android as your next device, I'm probably choosing iPhone again but I'd be considered the fanboy before you. I've also read many iPhone users buying the phone to look cool, but phones like the Droid are based on the cool factor. "iPhone is so not coolest phone anymore" some of them say. "Drooiid"

25. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

And who the hell are you to say that the iphone is not a smartphone when all tech authorities categorizies it as a smartphone. You're dumb. There are tons of SUCCESSFUL professionals who use the iphone, so how dare you say iphone users are stupid? Again, you are the stupid one.

2. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

Oh my goodness. Whoever did the test was probably an android fanboy. How stupid of them not to use the actual safari browser and think that they could easily get away with it. Are android fanboys this desperate? I guess.

3. clevername

Posts: 1436; Member since: Jul 11, 2008

I don't think they're fan boys at all. I'm far from an android fanboy but your comment is a bit ignorant. The article stated the reason why the browser wasn't used is because they were using a proprietary appso apple gave them the app to make the test.

7. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

But why use a proprietary app when you can use the actual safari web browser? If they didn't know that the javascript optimization is bypassed using the app, then I guess they are ones who are ignorant. And how can you say that Apple gave them the app to use for this test when Apple was the one who pointed out the flaw of this test? Duh.

20. Kjayhawk

Posts: 294; Member since: Oct 07, 2010

Your pretty dumb... It hasn't been released to developers yet. So the developers were forced to use their own app don't blame them, blame Apple for not getting the proper Javascript engine to Blaze. WOW I JUST OWNED YOU. Apple just supplied them with the proper Javascript engine to run this app. I repeat it has not been given to any third party developers like Blaze! Please stop pretending you know what you are talking about!!!

26. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

The iphone has been out since 2007 and you say that the safari web browser hasn't been released yet? Now that's stupid. And who the hell is blaze that Apple is subjected to submit anything to them? Blaze is an independent entity. Your stupidity owned you. Don't make up stories. Apple does not report to blaze.

32. p0rkguy

Posts: 685; Member since: Nov 23, 2010

Apple released it to the public, not just to Blaze. Blaze used what was offered to them and now Apple is coming back saying they didn't "fully" use it because they didn't have what Apple had. A bit silly of Apple saying Blaze didn't use a feature that they weren't even capable of acquiring.

35. aruegas

Posts: 9; Member since: Mar 04, 2011

So which safari is the public using? The half-baked one, or the optimized one? If you do not have the right browser, then don't even bother testing.

42. p0rkguy

Posts: 685; Member since: Nov 23, 2010

Wait, so you're saying what Apple released shouldn't be tested? Their optimization is found in the iPhone 4, not the browser itself. Apple released the browser without the full optimizations available on the iPhone 4. Who's to blame for that?

51. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

What should be published are the ones that truly matters. Who cares about beta tests and half baked browsers' test results.

54. jbash

Posts: 345; Member since: Feb 07, 2011

blaze tested according to what they had available. yes apple's browser may be faster with its update but they didn't have that available to test. Apple basically said your data is sckewed because you haven't used our optimised browser, and no you can't use it yet.

5. p0rkguy

Posts: 685; Member since: Nov 23, 2010

You're clearly an Apple fan boy with your post history. Practically every single one of your posts either defends Apple or degrades the competition.

8. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

Of course I will defend Apple if they are being wronged. So you think that test was fair then? You're clearly an Apple hater :)

12. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

Of course, when Gemini posts, all the thumb ratings go to hell. Dude, if the test results are wrong, they're wrong. However, before I was even done reading the article I knew you and your ilk would show up, claiming that the results of testing the actual browser would totally negate these conclusions. Boy, was I right. Now we just have to wait for your friends to show. (For some reason when I refer to other posters by name when not directly addressing them, my posts get removed-BUT YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE.) And before you start whining that I'm being a fandroid, you KNOW that you would be yelling at us if it were a discussion about XOOM vs iPad 2 benchmark tests and our speculation on how a fresh battery of tests would turn out. And knock it off with the sock account thumb voting, will you? It doesn't do anything except expose you as a loser who can't stand to let anyone decide whether someone else's posts are good or bad for themselves.

27. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

Oh and as if you do not give iphone users a thumbsdown. What a hypocrite. And excuse me, before you bring up my presence in APPLE ARTICLES THREADS, may I remind you that you have been posting in apple articles here way before I started. Again, what a hypocrite. At least you would only see me posting comments in Apple related articles whixh makes sense because I use Apple products, unlike you who trolls in Apple related articles and don't even have the iphone. And stop with the thumb voting thing. I don't do that. It is you who's been doing that, but when you see that readers prefer what Apple users post, you react, because you're the one with multiple accounts :)

34. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

Um, no, bullshit alert. Everytime you show up the ratings flip flop with three to five spontaneous votes. It's a shameful tactic, one that I only see young earth creationists use. And I only see it happen that way when YOU, and ONLY you show up. I only give an occasional thumb down if what's being said is incredibly stupid or inflammatory, and it can happen to either an Android or iPhone user. So that argument fails. I usually prefer to simply express my opinion. So you failed at understanding what I said about you. I said that you'd be here to DEFEND APPLE AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE. I don't care where the hell you post. It's your gag worthy posting content that I can't stand. I have exactly ONE account. I've considered making a few more just to negate the effects of your bullshit, but I haven't acted on this-yet. However, since you're most likely a troll (I can smell them a mile away) that's exactly the reaction you want. And I'm feeding you right now, but I don't care because someone needs to set the record straight with passable grammar.

36. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

Well I could say the same to you mister. So shut up :) Who cares about your thumb votes?! Like what you say affects Apple's success, hahahaha. But Apple's success truly affects you, lol. If you cannot stand me and other Apple users, then stay away from Apple articles dumbass :) There should be plenty of android articles to keep your slow mind busy, so shoooo :)

39. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

He's got a point. Anyone who has any kind of opposing opinion to yours is pretty much guaranteed an instant -3 or 4. And your outlandish and sometimes offensive comments always manage to get a + 3 or 4. I guess it's just a strange coincidence that only happens with you, huh?

44. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

No, Apple's success doesn't affect me. I just like to bitch at idiots who declare it the best tech company ever, when there are other companies which are more successful (Microsoft) and/or more innovative (Google, Palm, Motorola). Just remember that the iPhone wouldn't even exist without Motorola's contributions to the mobile industry. Motorola pretty much popularized the cell phone as we know it today, TWICE. And thank Blackberry for introducing the idea of a phone which was more than a phone. And thank Google for the maps feature on your iPhone. And thank HTC and Motorola and Android for bringing focus onto smartphone specs. Because after all, Android is about the closest you have to a PC experience on your phone that actually works.

4. p0rkguy

Posts: 685; Member since: Nov 23, 2010

For you idiots that don't know, Blaze ran the tests with UIWebView for both OSes. What Apple is claiming now is this, "well you didn't perform it on the iPhone 4 with it's super charged JavaScript, so your tests are wrong." I can understand why Apple would try to defend themselves on this matter but they didn't include anything about the Nexus S not having any enhancements either. Now those enhancements may result in different results but Android is clearly the winner when it comes to the browser. Apple clearly doesn't think the Nexus S by boosting it the same way.

9. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

Oh please. Why would you test browsers without their official optimizations? The real world would always use the most recent released version which would include all optimizations. So of course this test is flawed. So how can you say that android is the clear winner? Oh maybe with downgraded browser apps android is the winner, lol. So you would just use a browser that's not updated with optimizations because it shows better results for android, lol.

19. p0rkguy

Posts: 685; Member since: Nov 23, 2010

I love how this already infested with Apple Trolls that aren't capable of saying much so the most they can do is thumb down. Back on topic - Why are you so close minded when talking about Apple? I don't think you're comprehending it correctly, the BROWSER in Android is clearly the winner. If I had said the Android browser is the winner compared to the iPhone 4's BROWSER, then it would have been false. You're really not understanding the concept of the comparison. Apple is claiming Blaze didn't use the JS found in 4.3, which is true, but what makes you think the Nexus S isn't capable of using a JS to enhance/speed up the browser experience also? I like Apple, just not the ignorants that aren't able to defend it properly. I don't like to assume things but chances are you're somebody that didn't know much about technology until Apple opened the doors for you.

28. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

Again, another troll accusing other trolls from trolling around. How dumb. Just shut up. We're all on the same page here. How is the browser in android the clear winner when the test was flawed? How would you feel if iphone4 is being compared to a beta android device and the iphone wins? As for capability, android devices are not even capable of scrolling and pinch to zoom smoothly, hahahaha, much more JS. Oh and please stop assuming what other people know. It makes you look dumber than you already are :)

31. p0rkguy

Posts: 685; Member since: Nov 23, 2010

Troll accusing other trolls? Find a time where I've trolled someone on this site. I've been giving facts throughout the whole site. What have you been doing? Oh right, criticizing anything that was a competition for Apple when the topic isn't even related. Shows a lot about what an Apple user is capable of, no? Then why was the Android browser capable of beating Safari?They both started evenly and Android won the race, now Apple is saying it's flawed because they didn't use grease lightning on it which is available on the iPhone 4s. You're clearly not reading but that's okay, there will always people be willing to learn and those that refuse to learn anything once proved wrong.

37. 530gemini

Posts: 2198; Member since: Sep 09, 2010

What facts? The only fact that you've proven is that you're a low life hater :) Shows a lot on how jealous and bitter android fanboys like you are. The only reason why your android browser beat safari is because they were using a half baked safari version. There are plenty of articles where the iphone4 performed better than any android devices. Especially articles from last June or July last year when the iphone4 was released :)

43. p0rkguy

Posts: 685; Member since: Nov 23, 2010

Hi aruegas. :) Not optimized on the iPhone 4? Yes. Half baked Safari? No. It was Apple's own release of the Safari. Techies are going to test it against the competition if you release it publicly. Much like what has happened to IE9, which was just released a few days ago.

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