iOS 5 Brings Nitro Javascript Engine Performance Improvements To Home Screen Web Apps

iOS 5

In iOS 4.3, Apple updated mobile Safari browser with Nitro Javascript engine, which runs Javascript twice as fast as iOS 4.2.1.

However, Apple had not extended the feature to home screen web apps, so it was observed that web apps that are launched using the Home screen icon run much slower compared to when they’re launched directly in mobile Safari.

This prompted some publications to speculate that Apple was trying to cripple iPhone web apps.

But as we had expected, Apple seems to have addressed the issue in iOS 5. CNET reports that based on a thread on Hacker News, full-screen apps will finally be able to take advantage of Nitro Javascript engine.

Q: Did they fix the bug from 4.3 where home screen web apps don’t use Nitro?

A: This is probably breaking my NDA to say this, but yes, they did. Web.app now has the “dynamic-codesigning” entitlement, which enables Nitro.

It looks like native iPhone apps that load web pages using UIWebView won’t be able to take advantage of Nitro Javascript engine as Apple has not updated the interface with the latest Javascript engine due to security reasons.

Hopefully that puts an end to the conspiracy theory.

[Hacker News via CNET]