Review: Mercury Browser is a robust, desktop-style browser that looks amazing

Browse with power at your fingertips in this desktop-caliber iOS app.

The well-made Mercury Browser manages to bring many of the important features of your desktop browser to the mobile platform with only a handful of issues. Responsiveness and performance were slight problems in our tests, but they were never enough to deter from how well made this app is and how much it allows you to do compared to other browsers, especially the one built into the iPhone.

One of the first measures of success for a third-party browser on iOS is its ability to integrate the same features Safari already has. Things like reading list integration, bookmarking, sharing, and tabs are all very important. Mercury does this and more, by making it look more like a Chrome interface with full tabs, private browsing, and even the equivalent of a right-click menu. If you tap and hold any item, including links, images, and videos, you get an extra menu with options to save files, share with friends, or save to your reading list. The result is very quick and it worked as promised in each of our tests.

The only major issues we had in our tests of Mercury were with some buttons, such as the back and forward buttons, not always responding as quickly as in Safari. Combined with some loss of screen real estate, the app is not as friendly to those with larger fingers or when looking at a non-mobile friendly Web site. These are small quibbles for an app that manages to effectively present a fine product in every other way.

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