[APP][2.1+] Naked Browser 1.0 - A full featured yet tiny web browser

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aminaked

Senior Member
Oct 28, 2011
387
1,265
Redwood City, California
flowingwoo.com
I understand, and you are wise to be cautious.

There is no way for me to prove that Naked Browser (and Pro version) are completely trustworthy. Of some reassurance should be the apps' privacy policy, which I am required to post because of a law in my state (California, USA). If I break that privacy policy, I would open myself to legal trouble. This is something that many developers from China or Russia probably would not even think about. This is not a matter of race but a matter of laws and lack of enforcement of those laws.

In the end you have to test apps yourself. People have done this by monitoring network traffic to/from Naked Browser. Not one bit ever has been transferred by Naked Browser (and NB Pro) other than as a result of web browsing, with the exception of the "Google search suggestions" feature which is off by default and which has a privacy disclaimer in the option's description. This feature opens a connection to google.com to retrieve suggestions. The Pro version does not even use Google's licensing technology to prevent piracy of the app. It would just go against the philosophy of the app.

I have been contacted by 2 or 3 well-known search engine providers regarding making their search engine the default for Naked Browser. I think I mentioned before what an aggressive jerk the DuckDuckGo representative was in trying to make a deal. A director at another bigger company contacted me the other day with a very kind and personalized email, which I deleted without responding. This should give you some idea of my mindset when it comes to "selling out". The whole point of Naked Browser is that it does not sell out. My anger at Dolphin Browser's spying is what prompted me to make the app in the first place.

Excelsior! :good:
 
K

knucklesmckay

Guest
Thank you for all the info! I think we are on the same page here with privacy. I just purchased pro. It has some nice features and options!

I too was upset about Dolphin amongst others spying on its users. Privacy is growing issue and I am glad developers are noticing this.

What do you think about ixquick search? Is that a reliable private search engine?

I understand, and you are wise to be cautious.

There is no way for me to prove that Naked Browser (and Pro version) are completely trustworthy. Of some reassurance should be the apps' privacy policy, which I am required to post because of a law in my state (California, USA). If I break that privacy policy, I would open myself to legal trouble. This is something that many developers from China or Russia probably would not even think about. This is not a matter of race but a matter of laws and lack of enforcement of those laws.

In the end you have to test apps yourself. People have done this by monitoring network traffic to/from Naked Browser. Not one bit ever has been transferred by Naked Browser (and NB Pro) other than as a result of web browsing, with the exception of the "Google search suggestions" feature which is off by default and which has a privacy disclaimer in the option's description. This feature opens a connection to google.com to retrieve suggestions. The Pro version does not even use Google's licensing technology to prevent piracy of the app. It would just go against the philosophy of the app.

I have been contacted by 2 or 3 well-known search engine providers regarding making their search engine the default for Naked Browser. I think I mentioned before what an aggressive jerk the DuckDuckGo representative was in trying to make a deal. A director at another bigger company contacted me the other day with a very kind and personalized email, which I deleted without responding. This should give you some idea of my mindset when it comes to "selling out". The whole point of Naked Browser is that it does not sell out. My anger at Dolphin Browser's spying is what prompted me to make the app in the first place.

Excelsior! :good:



Sent from my Nexus 5
 

Pyroh

Member
Sep 20, 2013
18
2
What do you think about ixquick search? Is that a reliable private search engine?

I would say ixquick/startpage are very reliable private search engines (they are sister companies iirc). This user sums it up well:

http://www.reddit.com/r/InternetIsBeautiful/comments/1tblfk/how_to_disappear_online/ce6gich

Not audited by any authority.
Ixquick is the first and only EU-approved search engine.
https://www.european-privacy-seal.e...ases/20080714-europrise-press-release-en.html
Based on US. ixquick is based on The Netherlands.
duckduckgo's ceo's website: http://about.gabrielweinberg.com/ using cloudflare, cloudfront and kissmetrics. That should be enough.

By the way the US based search engine in question is Duckduckgo.

Edit: also aminaked I was wondering if you plan on open sourcing this? Sorry if you've already been asked, but unless your program is bound by commercial libraries then only good should come out of open sourcing this.
 
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See++

Member
Dec 26, 2013
12
5
Thank You aminaked

This is my very first post on XDA and i'm using it to thank aminaked for creating the Naked Browser and giving it to us adfree & without any shady background spying.

I discovered the Naked Browser for the same reason aminaked decided to create it, the evil Dolphin Browser. I installed the dolphin browser and after using it for an hour decided that it was the best mobile browser available, I still believe that it's one of the best for features and usability. (I still would not use Dolphin even with a gun to my head)

BUT.... then I realized that a browser this good has to have a catch, so I searched, that's when I found the famous Dolphin thread here at XDA by fnorder http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1319529

I read every post and before I was finished I had removed the Dolphin Browser from my tablet, I was very angry just like aminaked and I read in that thread that aminaked was so angry he decided to create his own browser. I am a programmer by trade so i'm well aware of the time and effort a project like this takes not to mention the ongoing support and development, I wish I had time for a project as worthy as this.

Thank you aminaked for all of the work you have done and for continuing not to sellout, I read about the rude offers from duckduckgo and others.

I must admit that when I first loaded the Naked Browser I was put off a little about the GUI but I just kept using it, there are so many cool and

usefull features all over the place once you find them, many are features that I still cannot believe the bigger providers do not offer. Point is... you have to use this browser for a bit before judgeing it. It's worth it, everything you need and more is there.

I do have a request/suggestion... aminaked I can tell you are like me, much more of a programmer than a designer, thats a good thing, pretty things hide ugly code. Would it be possible for you to make this browser skinable? Sadly we live in a world where looks are more important than value and first impressions are powerfull, I think if you made it skinnable by the users the 'look' would change and you would attract a lot more users without you having to do the design work. This browser is fast and feature rich and privacy is the best, looks would put it over the top!

p.s. although this is my first post, i'm a long time lurker, I used XDA back in 2009 to make a 3rd party web enabled phone for MetroPCS long before that was possible from them, I even turned down a job offer from the store owner.
 
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jasonalex

Member
Dec 23, 2013
14
5
Hey now,

I was fed up with the privacy violations, bloat, instability, and general stupid functionality of Android browsers. I decided to make my own. Introducing...

Naked Browser

TRUST: Right permissions with no spying.
SPEED: No bloat, including minimal GUI candy.
FEATURES: Crash restore, undo close tab, one finger zoom, infinite tabs, and more.
FREE: As in no cost. Not even any ads.

Here's the web site: http://nakedbrowser.com/android/

I've been working on this for the past few months. I've been quite meticulous when trying to focus on speed and avoiding bloat. As a result, it isn't the prettiest app in the world. However, please know that most of my effort went under the hood. Stability and a rich feature set mean more to me than eye candy.

Nice one.. upload the QR code in OP. its easy for us....
 

aminaked

Senior Member
Oct 28, 2011
387
1,265
Redwood City, California
flowingwoo.com
NEW VERSION in the Google Play Store: 1.0 build 85

CHANGE LOG
  • bug fix: start page and history less likely to garble

  • built-in downloader compatible with more servers

  • app chooser displays for more Play Store links, like movies

  • reverted font size changes (they were perhaps too small on some devices)

  • alternate fullscreen media handling option for a few older devices (if your device has issues displaying fullscreen video, please let me know)

  • bookmarks swipe from edge slightly bigger

  • minor progress bar spacing change, some Android versions

  • KitKat: blurred rendering which happened on a few sites fix by disabling "Faster rendering"

  • KitKat: blank page titles display properly
Thank you for your feedback XDA Developers:good: and please "star" these issues on Google's official bug sites to make your voice heard. Must be logged in to vote.

Android 4.4.x KitKat's WebView does not support file upload!
https://code.google.com/p/android/issues/detail?id=62220

KitKat WebView does not properly handle image links:
https://code.google.com/p/android/issues/detail?id=62928
https://code.google.com/p/chromium/issues/detail?id=323989

More issues: https://code.google.com/p/android/issues/detail?id=62293


I was wondering if you plan on open sourcing this? Sorry if you've already been asked, but unless your program is bound by commercial libraries then only good should come out of open sourcing this.

Yes, but not only good comes from open sourcing: spyware clones/knockoffs.

Could you somehow include old WebView libs with Naked Browser? Is there a way to downgrade it somehow?

It is possible: Dolphin's "jetpack" does this. However, I would be worried about security. I do not like the idea of maintaining a rendering/encrypting/JavaScript/cookie/password/form data/etc. engine because of massive security headaches. A team of people could do it right but even then the security headaches would not go away.
 

Pyroh

Member
Sep 20, 2013
18
2
YesYes, but not only good comes from open sourcing: spyware clones/knockoffs.

I'm sorry if I come off as hostile, but that is completely ridiculous. If someone really wanted to effectively distribute malware via your application then they could just repack it with whatever malicious script they like which could run concurrently to NB at runtime, but it's not like that would actually be effective as they most likely wouldn't be able to effectively distribute it through official play store channels. Keeping your app closed source does essentially nothing good for it in terms of security and it would be silly to think otherwise. If codebases as a whole can be independently reviewed it not only allows others to improve your app via pull requests, but allows people the freedom to fork your app and create a derivative version, which assuming you use a license like the GPL3 is most likely not going to result in "knockoffs" as they are legally required to give you credit among other things.

Please take a look at this article which echoes my reasoning behind why you should at least consider open sourcing this fantastic app: https://brendaneich.com/2014/01/trust-but-verify/
 

Pyroh

Member
Sep 20, 2013
18
2
What is ridiculous is your position that there are no possible negative consequences. What is completely ridiculous is that you argue with me even though I answered yes to your request.

Huh, guess I misinterpreted your response. Regardless, I didn't mean to imply there aren't any negative consequences inherently present in OSS, just that I haven't heard of many (in regards to security at least). I'm not trying to sound smug at all, but could you tell me of any cases/examples where OSS is worse compared to proprietary software? I'm genuinely curious.
 

maureenc

Member
Mar 7, 2012
6
1
Thank you so much for doing a new version for us Ami.....

Can I just ask you... If I download and install build 85 from your site (can't install from Google Play for my device) will it overwrite all of my Bookmarks and settings in Build 84?

Thanks
Mo
 

revcrpb

Senior Member
Nov 28, 2012
102
24
Ok, I'm a bit confused. There's a NB build 85 out. I have NB pro, which, according to the app info, is build 25. Is pro not being kept up now? I went to your NB site and downloaded the build 85 of the free version. So.... am I missing where to update the pro version? Is there an update? Help?

Sent from my VS980 4G using XDA Premium 4 mobile app
 

lemon567

Member
Dec 28, 2013
35
5
Slim and fast and safe been looking for a browser like this great job. You heard it probably a million times before but the UI needs a makeover, people who want to try that imo great browser get probably discouraged and dismiss it cause of the UI. Keep up the good work hope to see more in the future.
 

DocteurN

Senior Member
Jan 6, 2005
966
274

anthonycr

Senior Member
Mar 14, 2012
617
819
Albany, NY
I'm sorry if I come off as hostile, but that is completely ridiculous. If someone really wanted to effectively distribute malware via your application then they could just repack it with whatever malicious script they like which could run concurrently to NB at runtime, but it's not like that would actually be effective as they most likely wouldn't be able to effectively distribute it through official play store channels. Keeping your app closed source does essentially nothing good for it in terms of security and it would be silly to think otherwise. If codebases as a whole can be independently reviewed it not only allows others to improve your app via pull requests, but allows people the freedom to fork your app and create a derivative version, which assuming you use a license like the GPL3 is most likely not going to result in "knockoffs" as they are legally required to give you credit among other things.

Please take a look at this article which echoes my reasoning behind why you should at least consider open sourcing this fantastic app: https://brendaneich.com/2014/01/trust-but-verify/

I just want to jump in here and defend tony for not open sourcing naked browser just yet. I open sourced my browser and I now regret it. Yes, there are a few people that trust me now because they got to look at the code and see that no, I was not selling their data, soul, and belongings to the nearest buyer, BUT, there are now loads of ripoffs of my browser ON THE PLAY STORE. Tony does not need this for such a good browser as he has.

Look below, here are a few of the apps that have their roots (if not blatant copies of my browser). All of them are in one way or another violating the open source license and there is one (not pictured) violating my copyright by using my icon.
uploadfromtaptalk1390114467219.jpg

Don't pressure tony to do something that is not going to benefit him or you guys a whole lot, especially if he doesn't want to do it.

Sorry if this looks like thread hijacking, but I just wanted to express some concern before you made a big decision like this.

On the plus side, open source easily allows for translations.
 
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anthonycr

Senior Member
Mar 14, 2012
617
819
Albany, NY
I just want to jump in here and defend tony for not open sourcing naked browser just yet. I open sourced my browser and I now regret it. Yes, there are a few people that trust me now because they got to look at the code and see that no, I was not selling their data, soul, and belongings to the nearest buyer, BUT, there are now loads of ripoffs (a couple of these pictured are actually legit) of my browser ON THE PLAY STORE. Tony does not need this for such a good browser as he has.

Look below, here are a few of the apps that have their roots (if not blatant copies of my browser). All of them are in one way or another violating the open source license and there is one (not pictured) violating my copyright by using my icon.
View attachment 2525296

Don't pressure tony to do something that is not going to benefit him or you guys a whole lot, especially if he doesn't want to do it.

Sorry if this looks like thread hijacking, but I just wanted to express some concern before you made a big decision like this.

Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk



Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk
 

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  • 493
    Hey now,

    I was fed up with the privacy violations, bloat, instability, and general stupid functionality of Android browsers. I decided to make my own. Introducing...

    Naked Browser

    TRUST: Right permissions with no spying.
    SPEED: No bloat, including minimal GUI candy.
    FEATURES: Crash restore, undo close tab, one finger zoom, infinite tabs, and more.
    FREE: As in no cost. Not even any ads.

    Here's the web site: http://nakedbrowser.com/android/

    I've been working on this for the past few months. I've been quite meticulous when trying to focus on speed and avoiding bloat. As a result, it isn't the prettiest app in the world. However, please know that most of my effort went under the hood. Stability and a rich feature set mean more to me than eye candy.
    39
    Thanks guys. I'm really happy to read that it's real fast and it would be the perfect browser.

    I focused as close to 0% on the UI as possible. Honestly, that was a goal. My top priorities were speed, stability, and functionality/features. In fact, unless I forget something, other than the blue color I added the entire UI is based on function alone. I even resisted adding the button icons but it actually took time to read the labels to figure out what to do so I added them.

    I even wanted to go with the generic default "andy the android" application icon but instead opted to draw my own globe from memory in about 3 minutes in GIMP. So, it's not an old icon! It's new!!! ;-P And obviously I'm no illustrator.

    The UI shows my dedication to making it function properly rather than look beautiful. It's like Apache or something. The interface isn't beautiful--just a config file in Apache's case--but it works like a champ. Sometimes when you focus first on the way it looks (Microsoft?), you end up with a pile of doo doo. I prefer it to look crappy but run great. Later it can look and run great.

    Anyway, thanks for checking it out. I'm still improving it so keep it installed if you like. You might find yourself using it, you might end up thinking it's beautiful, but either way it will improve.
    15
    NEW VERSION in the Google Play Store: 1.0 build 58

    CHANGE LOG
    • bug fix: clear cookies on exit option now works
    • bug fix: disabling history no longer requires app relaunch
    • bug fix: SSL error prompt appeared too often in certain cases (if "Security warnings" option enabled)
    • bug fix: page titles updated properly on tab buttons (would fail in certain cases)
    • maximum number of closed tab undos increased to 12, removed number of tab undos option, decreased memory usage *
    • undo closed tab function restores more fully, including navigation history
    • fixed several odd/rare crashes **
    • small app launch, page load, tab close, and other speed optimizations ***
    • small usability optimizations ****
    * Decreased resource usage with increased functionality! (In most cases just a few KB reduction in memory usage.)
    ** At least five potential causes of crashes fixed. You may never have experienced these particular crashes but you certainly won't now.
    *** Some of these speed increases may actually be noticeable, especially on older devices.
    **** Small improvements include: less sensitive top menu gesture, slightly faster typing into web forms, better typing handling on smaller screens, better full screen video handling on newer devices

    This is a pretty major update! I changed quite a lot of code so it took a lot of testing. You may not notice much of a difference but Naked Browser is now faster, more stable, more fully-featured, and uses fewer resources!

    Thank you for the detailed feedback and support, XDA Developers! :highfive:

    On Messages, when you post a reply, and hit the 'Reply' button, it doesnt refresh the page so you can see the message you wrote.

    Doesnt happen always...

    Froyo and Jelly Bean devices worked without any issue for me. Does this happen on your device when using other WebView-based browsers like stock/Zirco/etc.? Specific steps to reproduce the problem also may help.

    android 4.1.2 , CM 10 nightly(released on 3/3/13)

    actually i have installed nakedbrowser.apk from your site, can you please confirm if its the latest one.

    The most recent release is always on web site. Which version do you have installed?

    Too much ugly.. adjust the ui and its good

    Read the first post in this thread and/or the first few lines of Naked Browser's Play Store description to learn why the UI is a low priority at this time. Search this thread for "UI" to find much discussion about it. If you have specific details on how to improve anything, please provide them. Screenshot mockups are best for UI suggestions.

    [0] Its probably too complex to implement onto existing code, but it would be interesting to have themes.

    1. People could trade some performance for nice look while still keeping features (and lets face it: performance hit would be negleable on newer devices). For others who want pure speed, they just don't apply themes and keep naked style.

    2. App would gain a lot of users (there are many people that seem to love its features, but don't use it due to its UI)

    3. Developer of app could dedicate its time to features and bugfixes like now, since 3rd party developers would take care of UI part.

    0. Would you explain why themes are too complex to add to existing code? This is the first that I've heard of this problem with Android.

    1. See my reply to proyatzu above. I am a solo developer so I have to prioritize carefully. I don't have time to continually worry about graphics or "hooks" for themers when I change code. I'm working on fundamentals.

    2. If you have marketing data, please provide it. Some things I'd like to know: How many more people would use Naked Browser if the UI changed? How does the UI need to look to entice these people? How much would these people be willing to pay for the app? Any specific numbers that you have would be appreciated. Where did you get your data?

    3. There's a catch-22. To allow 3rd party developers to do all the UI work, I need to work on the UI.

    Haha, I actually love the design after seeing it all day for some time! :)

    Thank you, .:Crack:.. Naked Browser is not meant for people who want to scrutinize menus. The web pages themselves are meant to be the primary focus.

    As time passes, more people will probably be satisfied. Everyone wants things now, but this isn't magic. Software development takes time and if it proceeds in the wrong order, you get headaches. :eek:
    11
    Naked Browser is different from many apps. It does not and will never spy or monitor. Look at other apps' permissions and so-called "privacy" policies to get a hint as to what's going on. Devs are creating free products but selling their souls to make money. Naked Browser is my personal not-for-profit project made ONLY to surf the web. I don't need to compete. Use it or not. You can help me make it better just by suggesting something, though.

    Naked Browser does not and will never report to Google or anyone else. If you turn on Google search suggestions, queries will be sent to Google. How else could it possibly work? The option is off by default anyway. Again, a quick look at the permissions of other apps will tell you that they're doing more than sending search queries to Google. The problem is rampant so be aware.

    I've combed through multiple versions of stock browser code and Naked Browser is faster than it. Stock is very well coded, but they were heavy-handed on some things and dropped the ball on others (no tab bar, no persistent user agent setting, etc.). As for Chrome, most people can't run it on their devices, and they've dropped the ball there too (no Flash, no persistent user agent, no tab bar hiding, etc.).

    Naked Browser's UI is intentionally minimal. Non-essential elements waste resources, going against a fundamental goal of the project. I've spent my time keeping it sleek and stable and adding new features. I've spent close to 0% of my time on the UI as a goal. How serious am I about this? I won't even include a donate menu item because I consider it bloat.

    I'm unemployed. I work day and night 7 days a week on Naked Browser. This is no weekend only project and I'm no newb. I've been coding Java since the late 1990s although I usually prefer Perl. It's easy to say Naked Browser is just a skin on top of WebView but that is inaccurate. There is a lot more involved--much more than I ever imagined when I started this project. Regardless, I just want to code and interact with good people. Criticism is fine but why take a dump on someone who works hard with nothing but the purest of intentions? Onward and upward!

    is it possible, that the webpage could render _under_ the URL-bar at first call? Or maybe an autohide for the URL-bar, because everytime you have to click on a webpage first to hide the URL so that you can read the content.

    My plan was to implement it that way but the feature is no longer available on newer versions of Android. It can be worked around but it introduces too much overhead for my liking and as far as I've seen, tends to be quite buggy. Still, I may take a crack at it in the pro version. Auto-hiding is on the to do list for the pro version.

    Also, it does take some time but after a week or so I got used to the menu behavior. The more you use it, the more it becomes expected behavior and hopefully not annoying.
    10
    I understand, and you are wise to be cautious.

    There is no way for me to prove that Naked Browser (and Pro version) are completely trustworthy. Of some reassurance should be the apps' privacy policy, which I am required to post because of a law in my state (California, USA). If I break that privacy policy, I would open myself to legal trouble. This is something that many developers from China or Russia probably would not even think about. This is not a matter of race but a matter of laws and lack of enforcement of those laws.

    In the end you have to test apps yourself. People have done this by monitoring network traffic to/from Naked Browser. Not one bit ever has been transferred by Naked Browser (and NB Pro) other than as a result of web browsing, with the exception of the "Google search suggestions" feature which is off by default and which has a privacy disclaimer in the option's description. This feature opens a connection to google.com to retrieve suggestions. The Pro version does not even use Google's licensing technology to prevent piracy of the app. It would just go against the philosophy of the app.

    I have been contacted by 2 or 3 well-known search engine providers regarding making their search engine the default for Naked Browser. I think I mentioned before what an aggressive jerk the DuckDuckGo representative was in trying to make a deal. A director at another bigger company contacted me the other day with a very kind and personalized email, which I deleted without responding. This should give you some idea of my mindset when it comes to "selling out". The whole point of Naked Browser is that it does not sell out. My anger at Dolphin Browser's spying is what prompted me to make the app in the first place.

    Excelsior! :good:
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