Gizmos Freeware Reviews  

Go Back   Gizmo's Freeware Forum > Debating Chamber > Internet, Web Apps and Networking

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 24. Jul 2012, 09:35 AM   #1 (permalink)
Super Moderator
 
Anupam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: India
Posts: 13,271
Default SlimBoat browser

SlimBoat : http://www.slimboat.com/en/ from the makers of SlimBrowser, is a new webkit based browser which has just arrived on the scene. There are some other webkit based browsers, like Arora, QTWeb, Dooble, Qupzilla. While Arora, and QTWeb looked capable of turning into something good, sadly, they didn't develop further, and seems like development of both of them has either stopped, or just stalled.

Dooble, although is in development, but, there is no detailed information about it on its homepage, and the one time I had tried it out, it did not seem much in workable condition. It still has a long way to go.

Qupzilla has shown some promise, and it's covered in a different thread, and it looks good, but still, it's a bit quirky.

I haven't mentioned Safari, Google Chrome, or the likes, because they are mainstream browsers.

When SlimBoat was suggested, I did not have much expectations from it, but when I tried it recently, it has impressed me a lot with its loads of options, customization, and some extra features, which I haven't yet seen in other browsers. I think SlimBoat deserves some attention. I will highlight the positives from the browser in this thread, and make it a small review.

SlimBoat comes with some built-in themes, so, if you are not satisfied with its default look, you can just play around and see which one you like.

There are two extra features in the browser, which I found very useful, as will others. First is the "Save as pdf". This feature, although needs polishing, because it did not work very well, with the Gizmo's Freeware homepage that I tried to save, but still, for mostly text based webpages, it should do a decent job. I hope they improve this feature in the future versions.

Next is the "Save Screenshot". This worked really well, and even captured the full webpage with the scroll, and that too without needing to do anything.. just a simple click. Pretty impressive.

Other features worth mentioning are that it provides a QuickFill to save forms, which I think many people might find useful. It comes with a whole load of options to personalize it. I don't use this feature, so I do not have much idea of how it works, but from what I see, it should work well.

A language translator is also provided in the browser, which although makes use of Google Translator by default, but still, it's useful in the sense that it makes things faster, and easier. It also has the option to make use of Bing, or Google online translation services, if so desired.

Also has the feature of "Groups" to group sites. I haven't explored this feature yet.

SlimBoat has a built-in download manager, and a popup blocker too.

It is also social media friendly. Comes with options to share status, page, or text on Facebook from within the browser... or, also share on other social media sites like Twitter, Google+ etc. People who regularly tread on the social site, or, like these features in a browser, will find this useful.

The browser has several customization options. The buttons on the browser can be customized according to preference, which certainly is an advantage. SlimBoat comes with certain buttons by default like Facebook sharing, shop on Amazon/e-bay. I did not want these and so very easily removed them from the interface.

There are several search engines built-in, and can be managed, and new ones can be added too. Google by default is the search engine, and it's mentioned custom against it, which I think is in some way customized by SlimBoat team. There are no Bing, or Yahoo, but they can be added manually, if so desired.

There are loads of settings in SlimBoat using which users can customize Popup blocker, Download manager, QuickFill, Appearance, Proxy, Privacy, and the likes.

It also comes with a startup option, whereby on start of the browser, a particular page, or a group of sites can be opened, or a set of commands can be executed.

A setting to show weather for present day in the status bar, is also there, which might appeal to some. To make avail of this, location has to be set, which is available via another setting.

All in all, it's a pretty great browser, which shows good promise. The pages are rendered very well, and I did not find any problem with a few sites that I browsed.

There are a few things which need improvement though. There is no built-in adblocker, which I found a major disadvantage. An adblocker is there in QupZilla, which is great. If SlimBoat could have an adblocker, it would be great, and would greatly enhance the browser.

Don't know about the extensibility of this browser yet. So, don't know whether third party adblocker, or, WOT, can be integrated into the browser. Have yet to test that.

The bookmarks manager allows bookmarks to be imported from IE only, which I thought is another major disadvantage, considering other browsers are quite popular today, like Chrome, and Firefox. I hope they do improve this further.

Overall, the browser looks good, and is pretty impressive, considering the features, and customization. Sets it apart from other webkit browsers definitely. I think it deserves attention, and considering its features, it should get it, in coming days, or months.

If it could keep improving, and work on the disadvantages, it surely will go a long way.

SlimBoat is presently available for Windows only, but Mac and Linux versions are in the plan. It has a portable version available, which is great, and will appeal to many users.
__________________
Anupam
Anupam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 25. Jul 2012, 07:44 AM   #2 (permalink)
Editor
 
George.J's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 1,636
Default

A splendid review Anupam. I may as well use your review in the article as it would be very helpful in my busy schedule, but with your permission.

Some of the tweaks that I would like to see are:
Disable "auto create new tab when url is entered" by default. This doesn't seem to work right as this option is enabled by default, which means everytime when we enter a url it opens in a new tab, which is not desirable.

Also I don't believe there's much extensibility to the browser as the option for adding extensions are not available (atleast to my notice) since the browser seems to be a rip off from the developers previous browser based on IE, Slimbrowser. I hope that he would enable an adblocker within the browser with reputable filter lists.

Another impressive feature is addition of 2 features that I liked in Qtweb (save as pdf) and in Qupzilla (save screenshot)
__________________
If you seek for attention, do common things in life in an uncommon way!
George.J is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 25. Jul 2012, 07:53 AM   #3 (permalink)
Super Moderator
 
Anupam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: India
Posts: 13,271
Default

Sure GJ, you can .

And true, I would also like to see that setting disabled by default. That feature of opening URL in a new tab is a bit quirky, because if you open a new tab, and then post a URL, and hit enter, it opens in a new tab, which is strange.

Yes, presently, the browser does not seem extensible. It would be great if they could either integrate an adblocker in the browser, or, make it possible to be added via third party.

Same goes for WOT.
__________________
Anupam
Anupam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 25. Jul 2012, 09:38 AM   #4 (permalink)
Editor
 
George.J's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 1,636
Default

The SpeedDial needs a bit of rework. The boxes aren't draggable which means that we can't position them according to our likes. Also they cannot be deleted, which means we're looking at empty speedial boxes in between.

Thanks for mentioning about Dooble, I'll add that in Lightweight Browsers section. I wonder why all browsers that are using QTWebkit as their rendering engine, or webkit based browsers with Qt Core like Arora, Dooble, QtWeb, Qupzilla, Slimboat are so light and works best on old hardware.
__________________
If you seek for attention, do common things in life in an uncommon way!
George.J is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 25. Jul 2012, 12:10 PM   #5 (permalink)
Super Moderator
 
Anupam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: India
Posts: 13,271
Default

Speed dial is not something which I like. It slows up the tab loading, which is annoying. So, I have it disabled, and replaced it with a blank page from the options.

Dooble is pretty much unusable. I had tried it in a virtual environment before, and I was way too disappointed with it. I really can't remember the exact things, but I would not even include it in a review. Give it a try, and see . There is a thread on the forum about it, but I had not updated it.

Well, not all webkit browsers are light. Take Google Chrome, it feels light, but does not run light. The moment you start opening up more tabs, they start a process of their own, and take up more memory, making it heavy. The advantage is the sandboxed tabs, but high memory usage is a disadvantage.

Safari is another which is pretty heavy. Further, it comes with the extra baggage often associated with Apple software.
__________________
Anupam
Anupam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 27. Jul 2012, 09:52 AM   #6 (permalink)
Super Moderator
 
Anupam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: India
Posts: 13,271
Default

One other good feature which I forgot to mention is that SlimBoat also has a feature to refresh a page automatically as per specified period. So, no extra software or add-on is required, in case one wants this feature.
__________________
Anupam
Anupam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 28. Jul 2012, 08:46 AM   #7 (permalink)
Editor
 
George.J's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 1,636
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anupam View Post
Well, not all webkit browsers are light. Take Google Chrome, it feels light, but does not run light. The moment you start opening up more tabs, they start a process of their own, and take up more memory, making it heavy. The advantage is the sandboxed tabs, but high memory usage is a disadvantage.

Safari is another which is pretty heavy. Further, it comes with the extra baggage often associated with Apple software.
Anupam, I was referring to QtWebKit browsers not Webkit. QtWebKit browsers are ones that uses Nokia's Qt port of webkit and runs multiplatform.
__________________
If you seek for attention, do common things in life in an uncommon way!
George.J is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 28. Jul 2012, 04:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 15
Default

Anupam, Thanks a lot for the great detailed review. Ad blocker is on the way and we have finished most of the coding work for it. Ad blocker should be available when we release 1.0.13.

As for the importing of bookmarks, the current version 1.0.12 should support importing from IE, Slimbrowser, Firefox and Chrome. But you won't see all the options if you don't have all the other browsers installed.

George, thanks for the comments for the quickdial. We will see what we can do about it.

SlimBoat will be actively developed along with its trident-based brother SlimBrowser (http://www.slimbrowser.net)
stephench is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28. Jul 2012, 04:56 PM   #9 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 15
Default

Anupam, I did notice the problem about saving as pdf on gizmo's homepage. I will check out what goes wrong. Thanks for reporting the issue.
stephench is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28. Jul 2012, 08:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
Editor
 
George.J's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 1,636
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by stephench View Post
Anupam, Thanks a lot for the great detailed review. Ad blocker is on the way and we have finished most of the coding work for it. Ad blocker should be available when we release 1.0.13.

As for the importing of bookmarks, the current version 1.0.12 should support importing from IE, Slimbrowser, Firefox and Chrome. But you won't see all the options if you don't have all the other browsers installed.

George, thanks for the comments for the quickdial. We will see what we can do about it.

SlimBoat will be actively developed along with its trident-based brother SlimBrowser (http://www.slimbrowser.net)
Great to hear that news Stephen. It'll be an excellent step for Slimboat to have a built in adblocker. I hope something can be done with extension support too. Waiting for fixes and changes for the speed dial... This has become an excellent browser. Thanks!
__________________
If you seek for attention, do common things in life in an uncommon way!
George.J is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 09:12 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2