MWC09: Bolt Browser - New Version and Open Beta

Bolt Logo

Update: Feature list for new version added.

At Mobile World Congress, Bitstream, Inc. announced that the Bolt Browser is now in public Beta, freely available to anyone without the need for a Beta code.

There's a new version too, 0.86.  I haven't been able to find release notes or any indication of what's new in this release.  I suspect it's a bug fix release with no new features.  Trying 0.86 on my BlackBerry and N95-3 I immediately  noticed one bug that's been fixed, pressing the 2 key for page up or the 8 key for page down actually does what it's supposed to do.  In previous releases these keys only scrolled four or five lines.  That doesn't sound like much but it actually adds a lot to usability especially on my old BlackBerry 7100i where Bolt takes about a second to react to a key press.  In less than a month, Bolt, especially on the N95, is has matured into a competent full-web browser.

Update: After, I posted this, I got an email from John Sidline, a Bitstream PR rep, listing the changes in 0.86 as:

1. More improvements to the BB scrolling. Now the scrolling is much smoother and on fast scrolling the pages are moved up/down more quickly.
2. Page up/down refinements, this helps in faster page up/page down (as you noted)
3. Video fixes, inline video play is compatible with more phones now.
4. Optimization of code size, few KBs less.
5. Better icon for BB devices
6. Our menus instead of native menus to send sms/call option
7. Misc. regular fixes and optimization

If you don't already have Bolt you need to go to and fill in the download form.  As I mentioned, a Beta code is no longer required.  After filling out the form you should immediately receive an email with single-use download links.  If you already have an older release of Bolt on your phone, it should prompt you to upgrade over the air as soon as you open a web page.  Now that Bolt is in public Beta, I hope  Bitstream will put the download on a mobile web site so first time users can do direct over the air downloads as the email route is quite inconvenient for anyone who can't receive email on their phone.

Bolt is Java ME application that should work on most phones supporting the MIDP 2.0 Java platform including the vast majority of GSM feature phones, BlackBerries, S60 devices and any Windows Mobiles phone with a JVM or Midlet manager. Theoretically it should also work on most Sprint (USA) CDMA phones. Can any Sprint users confirm?

Related Posts:
Bolt Browser Review
New Bolt Browser Beta

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