Apple has just released the first public beta of their new Safari 4 web browser for both the Mac and Windows (the Windows version now looking like an actual XP or Vista app). New features include an iTunes/Finder-like CoverFlow visualization for exploring browser history, and Apple TV commercial-esque visual wall of Top Sites (which should cause the same potential pr0nbarassment for some as Chrome and Opera's "favorite" visualizers in the past), the ability to search, spotlight-like through past sites, Chrome-style top-mounted tabs, robust developer tools... and most important for the iPhone and iPod touch's future -- the new Nitro Engine for screaming fast JavaScript rendering.

Yes, JavaScript engines are the new speeds and feeds. Bottom line, the more script, the slower and heavier the site. Hey, BlackBerry still turns JavaScript off by default on the Bold and Storm to get anything approaching decent rendering speeds. But with Google's V8 and Firefox's TraceMonkey helping push the technology -- not to mention every Web 2.0 site ladling on the AJAX -- we're going to need all the power we can get, especially on the iPhone.

As for the rest: CoverFlow already works well on the iPhone, though I'm not sure we need it in Mobile Safari, and the smaller screen might make Top Sites a little too tiny to be useful. And the search? Heh. We still need Spotlight on the entire iPhone, so how about we get that rolled up together?

Anything else you want to see in Mobile Safari 3.0?