We have long been witnessing a trend for the internet to go mobile, with more and more users accessing websites or looking for information online on their mobile devices – smartphones and tablets. The information that is required ‘here and now’ is easily provided by means of a portable contraption found right in your pocket or handbag. More than 10% of all searches on Yandex come from mobile devices. The Yandex.Search app available for all major platforms has been downloaded 3.7 million times by mobile users all over the world.
Today, we are taking yet another step towards our mobile users with the launch of our own Yandex.Browser for Android smartphones and iPad. The new mobile Yandex.Broswer features advanced search functions by Yandex available in Russia, Turkey, Ukraine, Belarus and Kazakhstan. This is the first version of the browser, which was designed for devices most popular among our users – smartphones operating Android 4.0 and above and iPad.
The mobile Yandex.Browser follows Yandex’s desktop browser released in October last year and utilises the best technologies and innovations implemented in it. Since its launch, the desktop Yandex.Browser has gained the monthly audience of more than 8 million users only in Russia. Our mobile users, however, have their own needs and expectations when they go online. With this in mind, we have added to the mobile version of Yandex.Browser a number of features that would facilitate the users’ internet experience specifically on their mobile devices.
The key feature of the mobile Yandex.Browser is that it helps users in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Turkey to solve problems on the move by offering them a shortcut to the required information. Using the browser’s Smartbox, a unified address bar and search box, allows to enter either a web address or search query, as well as the name or description of a site, and be taken straight to the required web page bypassing the list of search results.
The Tablo panel offers instant access to favourite and frequently visited sites. Popular searches instantly retrieve ready-made answers – videos, news, pictures, locations on a map. Upon searching for a photos of Saint Petersburg or café nearby, the user immediately sees a selection of pictures of the city or the nearest café on a map, without having to click through to them. The mobile Yandex.Browser also supports voice input.
The Yandex.Browser for iPad users in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Turkey caters to their popular need to quickly pick something online – a hotel, a recipe or a product. The browser’s iPad search interface has the Split View feature: users can see both an open web page and search results on the same screen and quickly switch between them.
Thanks to Opera Software-licensed Turbo technology, just like the desktop Yandex.Browser, the mobile browser quickly loads webpages even when the connection is slow. When you are on EDGE, for example, the browser’s Turbo mode turns on automatically to compress webpages on the server-side by up to 75%, saving your time and also money, if you are on a pay-as-you-use plan.
Yandex.Browser for the iPhone and for Android tablets will be available later this year.
In the next versions of the mobile browser users will be able to synchronise their passwords, user names, tabs, autofill entries, search history, browsing history, favourite websites in Tablo with their desktop browser. In addition, the later versions will support notification for unread messages from social networks.
Most features of the browser are available for users in Russia, Turkey, Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Belarus – the countries where Yandex provides locally-tailored search services that are deeply integrated with the browser. There is also a version with the English user interface available to anyone who would like to try a fast and secure mobile browser on their Android phone or an iPad.
The current international version of mobile Yandex.Browser has Google as the default search provider, with Bing, Yahoo! and Yandex offered as options, which can be changed manually in the device’s settings. To our users in China we offer Baidu as the default search engine, with Google, Bing and Yahoo! as alternative search providers. The next editions will give users an opportunity to choose the default search provider right at the first launch.