Part of the magic behind Amazon's new Kindle Fire tablet will be Silk, the special mobile Web browser the e-commerce giant built to help deliver consumers' Web content faster.
(NASDAQ:AMZN) is using its cloud-based business computing platform to bolster
its consumer electronics devices, equipping its new Kindle
with a new mobile Web
browser called Silk
browsing is a challenging task for today's Web browsers, as there is a lot of
network latency for various page assets that require multiple requests.
said a typical Web page requires 80 files from 13 different domains. Couple
that with the time the data traverses the network pipes, and that confluence of
processing activity bogs down Web page rendering and adds seconds to page load
uses a split browser paradigm that leverages Amazon's Elastic Computer Cloud (EC2)
Web services cloud computing software. Silk lives on both the Kindle Fire and EC2
to boost the Web page processing, using a complex prioritization model to help
resolve Web content faster for users.
time users browse the Web on the Kindle Fire, they are tapping into Amazon's
cloud of thousands of servers and fat, network data pipes. Every time users
click on a Web page from the Fire, EC2 handles the rendering and provides it to
the Fire on demand. Silk is a sort of limitless cache that doesn't require data
to reside on the Fire.
Web Services has peering relationships with major Internet service providers,
and many top sites are hosted on EC2," Amazon explained. "This means
that many Web requests will never leave the extended infrastructure of AWS,
reducing transit times to only a few milliseconds."
this seems easy enough in theory, there is a lot going on in the background, as
the process takes into account network conditions, page complexity and cached
content location. Amazon's
Silk team explained the process in more detail in this video
idea is to accelerate consumer access to Amazon's array of content services,
including Amazon Instant Video streaming movies and TV shows, Amazon Cloud
Player streaming music service, Amazon's Kindle bookstore and applications
served from Amazon's Android Appstore. The faster Amazon can speed users to their
content of choice, the more content they can consume.
Silk can improve with usage on the Kindle Fire. The browser tracks page
characteristics by aggregating the results of millions of Web pages that has
loaded, and stores that information in the cloud on EC2 to accelerate content
delivery. The browser also uses collaborate filtering to enable product
that split browser architecture is not new-Opera uses the same approach for its
Mini mobile browser-IDC analyst Al Hilwa called Amazon's strategy an
"interesting spin on the me-too Android software we have seen so far, and
possibly a game changer.
one fell swoop Amazon harnesses its commanding lead in cloud services, the
content richness of a leading online retailer and its successful Kindle
business strategy to deliver what might become one of most effective antidotes
to the mobile bandwidth crunch," Hilwa told eWEEK
is currently exclusive to the Kindle Fire, which Amazon will begin selling Nov.
15 for $199. However, it is rumored that Amazon has a 10-inch model in the
pipeline to pump out to users if the 7-inch model sells well. Silk will clearly
be part of that launch.