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Safari 5?

At the WWDC last Monday, in addition to iPhone 4, Apple released Safari 5. What’s different in Safari 5? At first, it appears that not much is new. . . visually. But, it turns out that Safari now includes some features that may determine the future of surfing the Internet. (By the way, notice how I capitalized the ‘I’ in Internet? That is because Internet is a proper noun, and thus, it is grammatically correct to capitalize it. Yes, it’s true. Weird, but true.) Anyway, what has been supposedly the world’s fastest browser just got faster. That’s one of the non-visual things in Safari 5. The other is better HTML 5 support including full-screen view/closed-captioning for video and geolocation.

Then there are a couple visual things. Let’s see, there is now a tab on Topsites that allows you to quickly switch to full history search mode. And the Google search bar in the upper right corner now works with Yahoo! and Bing as well. Oh, and they brought back to old blue loading bar, which kind of annoys me. But, perhaps most noticeably and importantly, there is a new feature called “Reader.” Reader allows the user to view a ‘quick-look-esque’ enlarged view of an article on a webpage without the clutter of ads and graphics. Safari 5 automatically detects when a webpage has an article and displays an icon in the address bar that says “reader.” If you click on it, you can read the article in a front-and-center view. It’s very nice. For a demonstration, visit the download page to download safari, then revisit this site and continue reading this article in Reader! The other nice thing about Reader is that you can download the article while in Reader mode with the click of a button. Could this type of viewing be the future of Internet surfing?

Well, to conclude, the reason I included a question mark in this article’s title is because I’m not sure if this updated version of Safari deserves its own number. Perhaps Safari 4.5 is more fitting. However it is a worthwhile update and I urge you to download it. After all, it’s free!

What do you think? Leave a comment.

By Andrew

Senior Editor of the Real Mac, San Jose, CA.

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