updated 09:25 am EST, Wed January 14, 2009
3rd-party iPhone browsers
A slate of new third-party web browsers has unexpectedly appeared at the App Store, reports indicate. The browsers were all published within a short space of time, and include titles such as the 99-cent WebMate, which queues up multiple links without switching to them, and the $1.99 Incognito, which deliberately omits any history tracking. Apple has not made any special notice of the software's existence.
The apps' presence remains significant however, as Apple has traditionally rejected third-party browsers at the App Store, accusing them of "duplicating functionality" offered by Safari. The approval of simple browsers may potentially pave the way for more comprehensive Safari alternatives, such as Opera Mini, or a mobile version of Firefox. An iPhone version of Opera Mini has already been completed, in fact, but has sat in limbo for months due to Apple's official restrictions.