In a move that’s sure to incite no small amount of confusion, Samsung announced that it’s opening up its browser to non-Samsung Android phones.
In a company blog post, Peter O’Shaughnessy — developer advocate for Samsung Internet — explained that anyone with an Android phone running 5.0 Lollipop or later will be able to sign up to beta test the Samsung Internet V6 app.
The latest version of Samsung’s web browser — which ships on all Samsung devices, alongside Google’s Chrome browser — will provide features like quick access to content blockers and a high contrast mode.
The Samsung browser can also sync with Chrome, thanks to a Chrome desktop extension.
Much like many of Samsung’s proprietary apps, its web browser ships on all Samsung Android devices, alongside Google’s suite of apps.
In recent years, Google has managed to convince device manufacturers, like Samsung and LG, to either reduce the number of proprietary apps that provide the same function as Google’s apps — like email, calendar, and, yes, the browser.
While manufacturers like HTC are slowly phasing out their own proprietary apps, Samsung remains one of the few companies that insists on launching devices with in-house versions of the Google app suite.
This isn’t the first time that Samsung’s opened up its browser to phones outside of its own ecosystem.
The company allowed Pixel and Nexus users join the V5 beta in May 2017.
For those Android users who are looking for a web browsing experience not developed by Google, they’ll be able to access the Samsung Internet V6 beta “gradually…over the next few days” via the Google Play Store.
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