Apple Updates Safari Web Browser, Adds Extensions

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Safari 5 is now available to download for Mac and PC. Apple’s latest iteration of its web browser brings with it a few new features; most notably, extensions. There’s also a new feature called Safari Reader, which pops news articles open in their own overlay while darkening the background of the rest of the page (see the image below).

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Apple is also touting Safari as “the world’s fastest web browser” on its download page, claiming that with the enhanced Nitro Engine “Safari 5 on the Mac runs JavaScript up to 30 percent faster than Safari 4, 3 percent faster than Chrome 5.0, and over twice as fast as Firefox 3.6.” I installed Safari 5 on my PC and took it for a spin this morning and it doesn’t feel quite as snappy as Chrome, though it does seem to outpace Firefox.

Windows users will appreciate Safari 5’s newly added hardware acceleration support, which leverages graphics cards to power videos and graphics inside the browser.

Other platform agnostic features include improved HTML5 support, the option to set Bing as the default search engine, and a “smarter address field” that offers website suggestions based on your browsing history and bookmarks.

More on Techland:

First Beta Version of Firefox 4 Web Browser Now Available

Google Announces Browser-Based App Store

Quick Look At The Opera Mini Web Browser For iPhone

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