July 2010 just saw the release of a web browser called Epic, built by an Indian software company.
We used it for some time and here are a few things we learnt –
- Epic is built on the Gecko layout engine (by Mozilla). (What is a layout engine? It’s that part of the browser that interprets the HTML and draws it on the screen for you to see.)
- Has a transliterator which can work in twelve Indian languages. ( This add-on uses Google’s help for transliteration. Here, there is a momentary lapse after the spacebar is pressed for the conversion to happen. We are wondering if this lapse increases, on slower computers and/or running slower net connections. We are running a 2Mbps internet connection on 1ghz/Pentium 4. )
- This is also the first web browser with an inbuilt antivirus by ESET. ( Interesting! )
- There is also a cute side panel which holds a large number of shortcuts – from popular social networking sites to computer explorers, and a number of apps, skins and wallpapers for further download. ( Thanks, but no thanks. Though convenient, the panel slides across open upon clicking one of the icons is narrow and breadth restrictive. It would be useful to check for any new emails, but I would rather read them in the bigger window.)
- Liked the well-thought-of featuristic notepad (called Write) but….(the icons in the Write window seem blurry, just clear enough to make do. It also seems to swallow the cursor at times when you paste an image onto the Write window and then you are on your own, counting your way out of a sentence, one letter at a time. But the biggest flaw seems to be the fact that the stuff you write can be saved only in .txt and .html formats. There is a need for support for more formats and a better exporter, coz the embedded images and text were found to be hyperlinked and embedded in html code, and What You See Is Not What You Get. This is not something that you expect from a “word processor”that you intend for everyday use.)
- This browser has an annoying habit of displaying websites on your screen in a strange shabby format that it chooses to. (For example – people like me who love the Twitter homepage are bound to be annoyed (gaze at the screenshot above, so much like GPRS internet!!). Twitter on Epic does seem like a Neanderthal website.)
- We liked the Privacy button and the button for clearing browser history. (a Mozilla feature that’s nothing more than but directly accessible here.)
Epic browser Official website: http://www.epicbrowser.com/
What we think –
Epic is an epic fail if this is what Alok Bhardwaj (CEO, Hidden Reflex, the company that built Epic) meant by innovation in software technology while saying, “We want to prove that India can be a hub for innovation in software and technology.” Though it functions well as a web browser, Epic seems more like a bouquet of popular shortcuts than a web browser trying hard to ride the Indian tricolor wave to glory.We think you can definitely live without this browser.
Do let us know of your experience of the Epic browser in the comment section below.