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Amazon Silk

Amazon Silk
Initial release November 15, 2011 (2011-11-15)
Development status Active
Operating system Android
Engine Blink
Available in English, Spanish, French, Italian, Japanese, Chinese
Type Web browser

Amazon Silk is a web browser developed by Amazon for Kindle Fire line of tablets and Fire Phone.[1] It uses a split architecture whereby some of the processing is performed on Amazon's servers to improve webpage loading performance. It is based on the open source Chromium project.


For each webpage, Silk decides which browser subsystems (e.g. networking, HTML, page rendering) to run locally on the device and which to run remotely on the Amazon EC2 servers.[2]

Silk uses Google's SPDY protocol to speed up the loading of web pages.[3] Silk gives SPDY performance improvements for non-SPDY optimized websites if the pages are sent through Amazon's servers.[citation needed] Some early reviewers found that cloud-based acceleration did not necessarily improve page loading speed, most notably on faster connections or for simpler web pages.[4][5]

Some privacy organizations raised concerns with how Amazon passes Silk traffic via its servers, effectively operating as an Internet service provider for those using the browser. The Silk browser includes the option to turn off Amazon server-side processing.[6][7][8]


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.[9]

See also


  1. ^ "Amazon's Silk Browser May Not Be Smooth When It Comes to Privacy". PCWorld. September 28, 2011. Retrieved September 29, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Introducing Amazon Silk". Retrieved June 24, 2012. 
  3. ^ "Amazon Silk is hiring: Software Development Engineers - SPDY". Retrieved June 24, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Amazon Silk: Assisted Web Browsing (Sort Of) : The Amazon Kindle Fire: Benchmarked, Tested, And Reviewed". Retrieved June 24, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Amazon's Silk Browser Acceleration Tested: Less Bandwidth Consumed, But Slower Performance". AnandTech. Retrieved June 24, 2012. 
  6. ^ Gregg Keizer (September 29, 2011), "Amazon's Silk browser raises privacy, security eyebrows", (Computerworld): 1–2 
  7. ^ Thomas Claburn (September 29, 2011), "Amazon Silk Browser Prompts Privacy Worries", (InformationWeek) 
  8. ^ Stephen Shankland (September 29, 2011), "Amazon Silk: One step forward, two steps back", (CNET) 
  9. ^ Amazon Silk—Amazon's Revolutionary Cloud-Accelerated Web Browser on YouTube

External links