Best of the Mobile Net

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Internet Explorer Mobile

Microsoft's ubiquitous Internet Explorer Mobile is slow and clunky.

Microsoft's ubiquitous Internet Explorer Mobile is slow and clunky.
Photograph: Rob Cardin
Microsoft's Internet Explorer Mobile, the default browser on a wide variety of Windows-based smart phones, lands in last place. Some sites looked perfect, but it garbled others to the point of unusability. Even major sites like Digg and the Yahoo home page (their full, not mobile, versions) came across as messes on our test phone, a T-Mobile Wing.

Still, having a handset with a touch screen helps in navigating sites. Windows Mobile is the only OS among the five that comes installed on hardware both with and without touch screens. On the other hand, scrolling is practically mandatory on an IE-rendered page, even in landscape mode, because of IE's rendering difficulties. While the browser's default font is compact and easy on the eyes, it's the little things--like a bug that abruptly overwrites the URL you've nearly finished typing--that make it so aggravating to use. Worse yet: It is the slowest mobile browser we tested, taking, in one case, over 2 minutes to load the home page of the irreverent news site

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