Coast brings minimal browsing to iPad

Slimline and intuitive, Opera’s new browser aims to be as simple to use as the iPad itself.

We’ve never really felt much need to install a new iPad browser. Safari does the job, and while we’ve nabbed Chrome at some point along the line we’ve not felt the need to use it much. They’re fairly interchangeable and Safari’s easiest to get to. So why would we want to muck about with another new browser?

Coast by Opera answers that question with minimal aplomb. While the likes of Safari and Chrome look and feel broadly similar to their respective desktop versions, Coast throws the whole desktop idea out of the window and attempts to give web browsing a feel more like that of the iPad itself.

And so nearly all the traditional browser furniture has been jettisoned and instead you’re presented with a delightfully simple and intuitive browsing experience.

As you visit sites, icons for them are added to Coast’s home screen, and then you can add them to its tab pages (which come pre-populated with a handful of popular sites), just like moving app icons around. You can swipe between multiple sites, however we were a little disappointed that you can’t pinch a site to minimise it.

It’s almost lovely to use; not as sleek as the iPad itself but it’s wonderfully swish compared with Safari. Will it become your regular browser? We’re not sure, but it’s worth giving it a try.

Key info

  • Works with: iPad
  • Price: Free
  • Developer: Opera Software
  • Version: 1.10
  • App size: 16.5 MB
  • Age rating: 17+

Words: Jim McCauley

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