Apple builds ad-killing Reader into Safari 5

Apple has quietly unveiled version five of its Safari browser, which includes an unique Reader feature.

The new browser didn’t even warrant a mention in Steve Jobs’ keynote address at Apple’s worldwide developers conference (WWDC) last night.

However, Safari 5 delivers an innovative new feature called Reader. This automatically detects when the reader is browsing an article page and, at the press of the button, strips away all the adverts and other on-page clutter, and leaves the reader with only the text and images to scroll through.

The Reader facility also detects when an article runs over several pages, and runs the entire article into the same page, saving the user from having to click through.

Safari 5 Reader

While users may welcome the lack of distractions, Safari 5’s Reader is unlikely to be welcomed by publishers, with adverts pushed into the background and page impressions likely to be reduced by the lack of clicking through pages.

Safari extensions

Firefox-like extensions are another new feature being introduced with Safari 5. Mirroring Mozilla’s plans for the next version of Firefox, Apple is encouraging developers to write the extensions using standard web technologies, such as HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript.

As with Google Chrome, the third-party extensions will be sandboxed from the main browser, in an effort to maintain security and stability. They will also require a digital certificate from Apple and will only run from within the browser.

Apple claims the new browser offers a 30% performance increase over Safari 4 and increased support for HTML 5 features, such as embedded videos and geolocation.

Safari 5 is available for download now for both Windows and Mac.

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