The team behind the popular Dolphin Browser HD have been testing a new version for the past few weeks with a “Webzine” feature that lets you view news from some web sites in a magazine-style layout. Now Dolphin Browser HD 6.0 with Webzine has left beta and it’s available as a free download from the Android Market.
The Webzine feature allows you to customize your new tab page with links to sites such as the New York Times, NPR, CNN, or the BBC. When you click on a link to a Webzine you’re taken to a new page with thumbnail photos, headlines, and snippets of each article. Webzines tend to load more quickly than full web pages and the layout is attractive and well suited for phones with small screens.
Tap on a headline or photo to open the article and things start to break down a little bit. You still get a quick-loading, streamlined mobile experience without any advertisements. But for most web sites you’ll only see the first few paragraphs of a story. If you want to keep reading you’ll have to click the “view article” button to load the full web page.
Webzines are certainly attractive, but I’m not entirely convinced that they’re all that useful. Still, Dolphin is throwing them in for free and the feature doesn’t seem to slow down the browser at all. Dolphin Browser HD is still one of the fastest, most customizable web browsers available for Android.
Version 6.0 also brings a new logo and program icon as well as some bug fixes including improved performance with Google images and better support for the Asus Eee Pad Transformer and Motorola XOOM tablets.