A lot of BlackBerry users are unaware that the browsing the web via your BlackBerry doesn’t have to be as painful as it is via the BlackBerry Browser.  There are third party alternatives that are quite good and offer a darn good experience compared to what you get natively.

One such thrid party BlackBerry browser is Bolt Browser.  It is celebrating its one year birthday, has been updated to version 1.7, and, now includes Twitter, Widget, and more language support.

Press Release:

BOLT Mobile Browser Gets Enhanced Capabilities for Its First Birthday
Bitstream unveils the most fully featured mobile browser ever for mobile phones of all types with support for widgets, international localization and many other new features at Mobile World Congress

MARLBOROUGH, Massachusetts and Barcelona – February 14, 2010 – Exactly one year after its public debut, Bitstream Inc. (NASDAQ: BITS) today announced a new version of the BOLT™ Mobile Browser, which makes the lightning fast uncompromised browsing experience for phones of all types even better with new features and enhancements.  The 1.7 release of BOLT offers increased functionality and usability, with new features including direct Twitter integration, Spanish and Russian language support, an enhanced download manager, increased streaming video features and the ability to run widgets. Bitstream is showcasing BOLT 1.7 to OEMs and carriers at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona from February 15 to February 18 in booth number 1A70.

As BOLT marks its first anniversary, the acclaimed mobile browser has surpassed 4 million users, streamed over 135 million minutes of video (equivalent to 256 years if played back to back), served more than 512 million pages – as many as 3 million pages per day, and downloaded more than 132 terabytes of data – an amount that’s double the size of the entire digital collection of the U.S. Library of Congress.

“The past year was both exciting and intense as BOLT’s developers learned what features were most important to its users, and how desired features would mesh with manufacturing trends in mobile handsets and the evolution of the Internet,” said Anna Magliocco-Chagnon, president and CEO of Bitstream.

“Before we launched BOLT we knew that Bitstream engineers and developers built a remarkable foundation on which we could continue to evolve the BOLT mobile browser, and the positive support and constant feedback we received from a great many of our 4 million helped us prioritize the features and enhancements in each successive release.  But as excited as we were for the first year of BOLT, the next year promises to be more dynamic as we plan to introduce features that took longer to engineer and we add more handset manufacturers to the roster of those preloading BOLT on mobile phones.”

International Localization
With BOLT being used by people in more than 100 countries, Bitstream has added language support so more users can use BOLT with a user interface in their own language. The 1.7 version of BOLT now includes options for English, Spanish and Russian languages.

Although BOLT already runs web-based applications written in Ajax, Javascript and other Web programming languages, such as the popular Facebook game Mafia Wars and Google Docs, BOLT 1.7 is adding widget functionality.  Now in beta, BOLT widgets allow users to install small self-contained Web applications that run directly from within BOLT.  Because these widgets are installed directly within BOLT they load and execute faster than website-based applications, giving users a wider variety of utility for their mobile phones.  BOLT users can discover, select and install specific Web apps through a BOLT Widget Gallery.  BOLT’s widgets are written as standard W3C widgets (www.w3.org/TR/widgets/), a standard with broad industry support.

Twitter Integration
One of the new enhancements to BOLT is an easier way to post tweets to Twitter. BOLT 1.7 has integrated Twitter capabilities into the browser itself.  Now users can post tweets directly from BOLT while they browse the Web.

Usability Enhancements
BOLT 1.7 now features keypad shortcuts that make zooming in and out of Web content as simple as a click of a button.  Users can now scale text and images without having to change the zoom presets in their preferences.

BOLT is the only mobile browser for all types of mobile phones to support streaming video from multiple video sharing websites such as YouTube, Yahoo, Google, RuTube, MySpace and more.  Now users can watch videos posted in CNN and ESPN, as well as watch embedded YouTube videos on any website.

For users on networks that support socket connections, BOLT v1.7 now offers automatic socket support resulting in a 15 percent speed increase for most users.  Previous versions of BOLT offered socket support that had to be manually configured by the user.

BOLT 1.7 features an upgraded download manager that supports multiple simultaneous downloads as well as the ability to pause and restart an active download.

BOLT was launched as a public beta on February 16, 2009, and has been widely acclaimed since then.  Frequently named a “must have” download and consistently receiving rave product reviews, BOLT has achieved a number of important milestones, including:
·         Outscoring competing mobile browsers by earning a perfect 100 percent on the Web Standards Project’s Acid3 test, meaning BOLT offers the most accurate website rendering
·         Installed more than 4 million times in more than 100 countries
·         Supporting thousands of different handset makes and models
·         Streaming over 130 million minutes of video
·         Serving 132 terabytes of data
·         Selected by handset manufacturers in Europe and Asia to be the default browser preloaded on new lines of mobile phones

BOLT’s Unique Capabilities include:
·         Best of breed page load speeds
·         Most accurate page rendering
·         Best of breed data compression
·         Displays full websites just as they would appear on desktop computers
·         Streams videos from popular video services such as YouTube
·         Copy and paste text
·         Uploads video and photo files directly to websites from browser
·         Only major WebKit based cloud computing browser
·         FOTA updates
·         Six levels of magnification

Recognizing that some mobile phones currently in use cannot support the full size application and some network providers limit the size of application downloads, Bitstream also offers a light version of the BOLT mobile browser, BOLT LiteTM.  BOLT Lite contains all the essential features of the BOLT mobile browser, retaining BOLT’s feature-rich functionality, best-of-breed download speeds and desktop PC-style page layout in a smaller package optimized for entry-level devices.

BOLT and BOLT Lite are both available for free download at http://boltbrowser.com.

About BOLT
The acclaimed BOLT mobile browser has the most faithful rendering of Web pages of any browser in its class. This fast mobile browser quickly and accurately displays Web pages on mobile phones just as they would appear on desktop computers. BOLT is the only browser for mobile phones of all types to support streaming video from popular media sharing sites such as YouTube and MySpace. Based on the same WebKit rendering engine used by the iPhone’s Safari and Android’s Chrome browsers, BOLT is compatible with the majority of the world’s 4 billion mobile phones. BOLT features a patented split-screen viewing mode, intuitive keystroke shortcuts and copy/paste functionality, and offers a user-friendly, feature-rich mobile browsing experience for even entry-level mobile phones. Download BOLT for free at http://boltbrowser.com – the mobile Internet has never looked this good on your phone.

About Bitstream
Bitstream Inc. develops software technologies and applications for the graphic art and mobile communications industries. Bitstream’s award-winning fonts and font technologies enable device manufacturers and application developers to render the highest quality text in any language, on any device, at any resolution. The company’s MyFonts brand is the world’s leading provider of fonts to consumers. Bitstream’s Pageflex brand enables marketers to easily produce customized communications in print, email, and online. The company’s latest offering is the BOLT mobile browser, which has been installed by millions of users worldwide since its release in February 2009.  For more information visit www.bitstream.com.