Amazon Silk browser leverages cloud for Kindle Fire tablet

Today, Amazon has announced some sexy, cheap tablets, and one of them, the Kindle Fire, is running a new browser called Silk. It’s using Amazon’s extensive Web Services servers to do the bulk of the heavy lifting with CSS and JavaScript so the tablet doesn’t have to. Amazon is claiming 5 ms latency, versus the standard 100 ms, which also means less device strain and conserved battery life, apparently. Popular sites and their associated files are cached on Amazon’s servers for quick retrieval, and they’ve even got algorithms in place to predict which sites you might be visiting, and push content to your tablet before you even visit.

Although this set-up it’s smart, it’s not exactly new; offloading rendering chores to remote servers is something Opera has been doing for awhile on mobile. Amazon, however, has a much more robust infrastructure in place to handle this sort of stuff, and given the $200 price point of the Kindle Fire, they’ll likely have a lot of volume to deal with.

The browser plays a big part in tablet computing, and Silk already stands apart from many of the current alternatives. While it all looks great on paper, we’ll have to reserve judgement to know for sure just how well the whole thing runs. In the meantime, here’s a video talking about Amazon’s thinking behind Silk on the Kindle Fire tablet. You can learn more about the browser here, or at their FAQ.

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