Apple releases Safari 5 for Mac and Windows

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Apple releases Safari 5 for Mac and Windows

Browser opened up for developers.

Apple is updating its Safari browser with new features including a speed boost, multiple search options and new Reader software that supports HTML 5 extensions.

The company said that the updated Nitro JavaScript engine in Safari 5 had a 30 percent speed improvement over Safari 4, giving it a three percent advantage over Google's Chrome and double the spped of Firefox. DNS prefetching, and caching of previously viewed pages also boost the browser's speed, but will increase data throughput.

For developers all flavours of the browser will now be supporting extensions, using the Safari Developer Program. Extensions in HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript are now supported, with HTML5 extensions including HTML5 Geolocation, HTML5 sectioning elements, HTML5 draggable attribute, HTML5 forms validation, HTML5 Ruby, HTML5 AJAX History, EventSource and WebSocket able to be integrated.

Users will also now have a choice of search engines, between Google, Bing or Yahoo as the default search engine.

There was scant mention of the browser in Steve Jobs' opening keynote at the WWDC conference and the launch of the browser appears unusual for the usual tightly controlled Apple. The press release appeared on PR newswires, was then pulled and then reinstated with a working link to the software.

“Safari continues to lead the pack in performance, innovation and standards support,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing in a statement.

“Safari now runs on over 200 million devices worldwide and its open source WebKit engine runs on over 500 million devices.”

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