Research In Motion has acquired WebKit solutions developer Torch Mobile, creator of the Iris web browser for mobile and embedded devices. Financial terms were not disclosed. Torch announced the acquisition on its website: "Our team of developers will join RIM's global organization and will now be focused on utilizing our WebKit-based mobile browser expertise to contribute to the ongoing enhancement of the BlackBerry platform... As part of RIM, these developers will continue to be active participants in the WebKit development community." WebKit already powers mobile browsers on competing device platforms including the iPhone, Symbian S60 and Android.
The Torch Mobile deal follows just days after reports indicating RIM is planning to integrate full Adobe Flash and Microsoft Silverlight support into future versions of the BlackBerry web browser. According to the Boy Genius Report, which says it's been gathering details for roughly a month, RIM likely will not introduce Flash and Silverlight support until the summer of 2010--in the interim, the handset maker must achieve higher data speeds to support its proposed web features. BGR adds that next-generation BlackBerry devices have already achieved download speeds over 10Mbps in RIM test labs.
For more on the RIM/Torch Mobile deal:
- check out the Torch Mobile website
RIM introduces BlackBerry Developer's Blog
RIM touts new features, markets for BlackBerry App World
BlackBerry LBS apps four times pricier than iPhone