Browser rumblings and mobile movement

The latest in Download news.

As April came to a close, we saw plenty of activity in the worlds of browsers and mobile apps.

First, Microsoft gained a bit of steam as IE9 skipped ahead of Opera in browser usage (though only by a fraction of a point). Meanwhile, Google introduced speech-to-text for Chrome 11, a feature that lets you talk to your browser. See a quick video demo here. Mozilla made its own headway in the form of an announced Firefox engine overhaul. Expect graphics and JavaScript performance to improve dramatically, but not by June 21, the scheduled release date of Firefox 5.

And on the mobile front, plenty of splashy apps and new features caught our eye this past week as iPhone users got VoxOx, which adds a bundle of voice and text features to your phone, and Onavo, a free app that could save you some cash by compressing your data consumption. Meanwhile, Android users rejoiced at the long-awaited Google Docs app for Android. It's a little thin on the features, but still a useful tool for collaborating on the go. Finally, be sure to read about BlueStacks, a potentially game-changing virtualization program that can run a full version of Android on your Windows machine.