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Posted on December 3rd, 2010 by Mike Jennings

Android App of the Week: Miren Browser

Miren BrowserMiren Browser isn’t exactly a unique proposition – after all, Android’s Market boasts dozens of third-party browsers – but this new contender boasts a shedload of features alongside one of the slickest interfaces we’ve seen.

It’s much easier to use than many of its rivals, which are feature-packed but often fiddly. Open a page in Miren and it’ll default to its full-screen view – which automatically hides Android’s status bar, too – so you can take advantage of every one of your device’s precious pixels.

Navigation options are both useful and unobtrusive, hidden in the corners of the screen and fading from view if they’re not in use. The right-hand corner houses a button to open Miren’s address bar as well as a handy loading dial, and the bottom-left corner provides a back button. The top of the screen provides links to your tabs alongside a small symbol to open a new page.

Desktop-style features are present elsewhere to make life easier. Chrome users will be familiar with the eight thumbnail images of your favourite sites that appear on boot, and they’re present here, too, alongside links to your bookmarks, history and downloads. Those eight thumbnails can also be customised with links to either a selection of bookmarks or simply the sites you visit most.

Delve into Miren’s intuitive interface and more options become available. A small star beside the address bar lets you easily bookmark a page, and the address bar will bring up likely URLs and search suggestions once you’ve started typing – an invaluable feature that’ll be familiar to any Chrome or Firexox users.

The settings menu is divided into basic and advanced modes, with the former providing simple text side, image loading and cache-clearing options and the latter allowing you to delve into much more detail.Miren Browser

Flash can be disabled, for instance, if you’d prefer the full iPhone browsing experience, and a whole range of page zooming, pop-up blocking and encoding settings can be tweaked. Privacy and security options include clearing your cache, history, cookies and form data, and your passwords can be remembered or cleared with the click of a button.

Miren has options beyond those of other Android browsers, too. Your bookmarks and data can be automatically backed up to your phone and imported from your SD card, and the full-screen mode’s floating buttons can be deactivated or set to automatically fade from view if you’re not using them. There’s even a neat option to pause all downloads if you’re not longer using Wi-Fi, to ensure that you don’t incur high data charges. The only thing we’re missing, at least on the surface, is the option to enable desktop rather than mobile versions of sites.

It has almost all the options you’d want, packed into one of the best interfaces we’ve seen of any browser on the Android platform. It’s free, available right now and is our Android App of the Week – so what are you waiting for?

Want more great Android apps? Check out our previous Android Apps of the Week or read our 36 Best Android Apps feature

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4 Responses to “ Android App of the Week: Miren Browser ”

  1. Phil Clark Says:
    December 16th, 2010 at 9:53 am

    I love the browser, but it seems to suck power on my HTC Desire. After having it installed for just 1 day and, although admittedly using it for a while to see what it could do, I noticed a considerably higher power drain than usual. I checked the ‘battery use’ statistics and was amazed to see Miren Browser right up there showing it had used 14% of my battery, alongside ‘cell standby’, ‘wi-fi’ and ‘Android system’. This was after having it installed for 8.5 hours, and only using it for around 20 minutes (how interesting can a new browser really be, after all?) to do my Gmail etc – all stuff I would normally do with the standard browser, although not so intensively in one lump of time.

    So, whilst it is a nice browser to use, I have uninstalled it. I have no idea why it used so much power, or what it was doing whilst I wasn’t using it. Maybe it will improve in a later iteration.

     
  2. stewart Says:
    December 16th, 2010 at 11:48 am

    I tried it too and quite liked it, but after a quick dabble with Firefox Beta too I have gone back to Dolphin – nothing handles the pinch/zoom/reformat text as well, for me anyway, my Desire just loves it :)

     
  3. Dolphi Browser is the Best Says:
    December 16th, 2010 at 3:16 pm

    This sounds nice but I didn’t see anything about gestures in the article. Unless, Miren has a gestures feature which can compete with Dolphin, Miren is really just another browser.

     
  4. Jason Hanford-Smith Says:
    January 1st, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    “The only thing we’re missing, at least on the surface, is the option to enable desktop rather than mobile versions of sites”

    Under Settings/Advanced/Web Page/User Agent. Set it to “Chrome Desktop”

    This may be a new feature since the review. Not sure

    Love this browser for being quick and light

     

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