Here is another addition into the browser war as Yahoo! released its own browser called Axis.The PC world is dominated by Internet Explorer, Firefox and Chrome, as well as Safari on the Mac, and rather than try to break this stranglehold, Yahoo has created a plug-in that installs into these browsers and brings a new visual style to the table. Once Yahoo Axis is installed, users get a search-box at the bottom-left of their browser, and when you type a query in, thumbnails pop up along the bottom, giving you an at-a-glance look at your potential destinations.
Axis replaces the standard search results page in other browsers with a menu of search results appearing as thumbnails at the top of the page. The menu allows the user to stay on the current page without navigating away from it.
a) Mobile browser
b) Desktop browser extension
- Google Chrome (all versions)
- Mozilla Firefox (version 7 and higher)
- Internet Explorer (version 9 and higher)
- Apple Safari (version 5 and higher)
The advantage of Yahoo! Axis:
It gives you visual search results as you type, letting you see what the page looks like before you click on it. You can download Axis as a mobile browser for your Apple iOS devices by clicking here. And if you use a major HTML5 enabled desktop browser like Firefox, Chrome, Safari, or Internet Explorer, you can download the desktop plug-in here.
Axis also includes a personalized home page that contains your most recently visited sites, bookmarks and articles you plan to read later. This personalized home page stays with you across your desktop, iPad and iPhone, keeping what’s important to you in one easy, centralized spot. No matter what device you started on, you can easily pick up where you left off when you switch devices.
Axis even has a few bonus features for iPhone and iPad users, like simple swiping to quickly get from one search result to the next, a bar that combines the search box and address bars into one, and sharing so you can easily post any page you’re viewing to Twitter or Pinterest.
What about Android?
The Android version of Axis is still in development, and while it’s much easier for a user to get an alternative browser installed and embedded in an Android product, it’s a pretty safe bet that Google isn’t exactly going to roll out the welcome mat for Yahoo’s browser. Google already has two of its own browsers for mobile, the Android browser and the still-in-beta Android version of Chrome. And those drive traffic to Google’s ads, not Yahoo’s. (Firefox, by the way, defaults to using Google for search, so even when people use it instead of Chrome, Google still wins.)
The Axis browser may not conquer the world, but it is a very strong mobile product with an important new design concept for search. It’s also a gutsy business move from Yahoo. It’s rather refreshing.