Let's be honest here — most mobile browsers feel like desktop browsers stuffed into the confines of your smartphone, except with less functionality. Sure, we're used to it at this point, but do you ever really step back and think about if the browser you use daily to find low-energy pasta recipes or figure out whether or not it was the same guy in both Jurassic Park and Merlin is actually working with your mobile device and not against it? Thankfully, one Utah-based startup has, and today it launched a browser created specifically for smartphone use. Called Cake, the browser app allows you to easily refine your search as well as swipe back and forth between direct search results instead of needing to keep going back to the original list of links over and over again. (Also, to save you a search, yes, Sam Neill played both Grant and Merlin.)
- Cake - Free - Download now
Along with the global launch of Cake for iOS and Android, the company also announced it has raised $5 million in funding from Peak Ventures, Pelion Ventures, and Kickstart Seed Fund to further improve the app.
When you go to perform a search with Cake, you no longer have to worry about dealing with the time-consuming middleman that is navigating the search result index page. Instead, when you type your search into the search bar at the top and tap go, you'll immediately be shown the best result. If that doesn't give you the answers you seek, all you need to do is swipe left to view other related pages. While this may feel a bit strange — kind of like you aren't controlling your search result fate because you can't click only on the links you want — it does save you a lot of time. You may also end up browsing results you wouldn't have normally clicked on otherwise, allowing you to get some new perspectives on whatever you're searching for.
That being said, Cake does allow you to customize your search results up to a point. Much like in a normal Google search, you can designate if you're looking for image, video, news, or shopping results. When searching for an image, you can choose to specify what source you prefer to get your results from (Cake offers Giphy, Bing, Google, Flickr, Imgur, Picsearch, Pixbay, and Unsplash). When looking for the best place to buy something, Cake allows you to toggle between popular online retailers such as Amazon and Ebay. And, if you're the type of person that just enjoys perusing the web without searching for anything in particular, you can choose to simply check out the top sites pertaining to broad topics like Tech and Cooking.
What data do we collect? In normal browsing mode, the Cake browser may store your browsing history (URLs of pages that you visit, your IP address, a cache of text, images and other resources from those pages) on your local device, in an anonymous fashion that is not tied to your identity. The Cake browser gives you the option to store on your local device in an encrypted fashion your usernames and passwords (to help fill out forms or sign in to sites you visit). The Cake browser also stores on your local device a list of permissions you have granted to sites, cookies or data from sites you visit, and a record of what you downloaded from websites. We may collect browsing information (URLs of pages visited and IP addresses) in an anonymous fashion that is not tied to your identity. When you are in Privacy Mode, Cake does not collect your anonymous browsing history information and deletes any cookies or other downloaded information when you close any tabs that were opened in Privacy Mode.
You can manage your information in the Cake browser. At any time, you can delete your browsing history (URLs of pages that you visit, a cache of text, images and other resources from those pages) and remove any cookies or other site data stored on your device.
"Personal Information" means individually identifiable information that would allow us to determine the actual identity of and contact, a specific living person. We may collect Personal Information in the future through our services and products. We may also collect your geo-location information in the future, but with your consent.
All good things aside, though, I'm going to go out on a limb and say Cake isn't for everybody. As I mentioned before, because you aren't selecting search results from an index of links, you may have to view some results you don't care for. And, because the interface is so unlike any other popular browser, some actions seem particularly awkward — specifically, backing out of your current search to start a new one, or switching from searching for news results to searching for videos. However, it's nothing that you wouldn't get the hang of once you got used to the app.
If you'd like to try Cake for yourself, you can download by visiting the Cake website or by clicking the link below.
- Cake - Free - Download now
Do you think Cake will revolutionize the mobile browser format? Share your opinions in the comments!
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