Amazon Silk is a web browser developed by Amazon for Kindle Fire. It uses a split architecture whereby some of the processing is performed on Amazon's servers to improve webpage loading performance. The frontend is loosely based on the WebKit browser engine.
For each webpage, Silk decides which browser subsystems (e.g. networking, HTML, page rendering) to run locally on the tablet and which to run remotely on the Amazon EC2 servers.
Silk uses Google's SPDY protocol to speed up the loading of web pages. Silk gives SPDY performance improvements for non-SPDY optimized websites if the pages are sent through Amazon's servers. In real-world testing, several sites have recommended disabling cloud-based acceleration to improve page loading speed.
Due to the split design, the browser is not able to run a local copy of a website, which is stored on the device itself.
Privacy and security concerns have been raised in regards to Amazon intermediating all Internet activity through the Silk browser. The Silk browser includes the option to turn off Amazon server-side processing.
Amazon says "a thread of silk is invisible yet incredibly strong connection between two different things", and thus calls the browser Amazon Silk as it is the connection between Kindle Fire and Amazon's EC2 servers.
- ^ "Amazon's Silk Browser May Not Be Smooth When It Comes to Privacy". PCWorld. September 28, 2011. Retrieved September 29, 2011.
- ^ "Introducing Amazon Silk". Amazonsilk.wordpress.com. Retrieved June 24, 2012.
- ^ "Amazon Silk is hiring: Software Development Engineers - SPDY". Aws.amazon.com. Retrieved June 24, 2012.
- ^ "Amazon Silk: Assisted Web Browsing (Sort Of) : The Amazon Kindle Fire: Benchmarked, Tested, And Reviewed". Tomshardware.com. Retrieved June 24, 2012.
- ^ "Amazon's Silk Browser Acceleration Tested: Less Bandwidth Consumed, But Slower Performance". AnandTech. Retrieved June 24, 2012.
- ^ Gregg Keizer (September 29, 2011), "Amazon's Silk browser raises privacy, security eyebrows", computerworld.com (Computerworld): 1–2
- ^ Thomas Claburn (September 29, 2011), "Amazon Silk Browser Prompts Privacy Worries", informationweek.com (InformationWeek)
- ^ Stephen Shankland (September 29, 2011), "Amazon Silk: One step forward, two steps back", news.cnet.com (CNET)
- ^ Amazon Silk—Amazon's Revolutionary Cloud-Accelerated Web Browser on YouTube