iOS 8 Lets Third-Party Apps Use The Same JavaScript Engine As Safari


When iOS 7 launched, developers discovered that their apps with built-in web browsers were unable to achieve the same level of JavaScript performance as the stock Safari app. This was because Apple restricted use of its improved Nitro JavaScript engine to its own app, leaving third-parties with a slower version.

As of iOS 8, however, it seems that decision has been reversed. All apps will now be able to use the same improved JavaScript engine that powers Safari. That means Google’s Chrome browser on iOS will now be just as quick as Safari, as will the pop-up browsers embedded in apps like Twitter and Facebook.

Ostensibly, Apple limited Nitro to Safari for security reasons. With the new inter-process technologies of iOS 8, this is no longer a concern. It’s great to see that Apple has opened it up. With stuff like third-party keyboards now a reality, it isn’t that much of a stretch to think that one day Apple will let you replace the default browser altogether on iOS.