By the time I got wind that Skyfire was looking for Alpha testers, the sign-up sheet had already been filled to the brim. Bummer, right?
Fear not! As luck may have (the “luck” here being for early adopters, if not necessarily Skyfire), a Beta copy just leaked out for all to enjoy.
The bad news: it looks like Skyfire might be sending takedown requests to anyone distributing the Beta. We were able to get our hands on it before the first links started going down, but we’re not going to be able to host a download of it. Google the relevant keywords – you’ll find a download link in no time flat.
I was hoping to do a full hands-on with the leaked Beta – but at this point, it wouldn’t really be fair. To sum up everything I would have said: Skyfire for Android needs work. There’s no multi-touch or double-tap-to-zoom support yet, so the only zooming mechanism is a little -/+ button in the bottom right (and boy, is it sloooow.) There also doesn’t seem to be any support for rich media like Flash and Silverlight yet, which, given that that’s Skyfire’s flagship feature, really lops the experience off at the knees.
Update: Looks like this version was purposely lopped off at the knees. Check down in the comments below: according to Skyfire’s CEO Jeff Glueck, a handful of the cloud-based features that would have been found in this leaked beta were disabled immediately following the leak. We’ve confirmed with Skyfire that this comment is legitimate.
With that said, remember: this is early, early stuff. We’ll check back in with Skyfire for a proper hands on a bit further along in the development process. In the mean time, enjoy some screenshots of the current state of things: