Russia's Yandex fires up mobile browser for iPad and Android phones

Russian search company Yandex places Android and iPad first on mobile.

Russian search engine Yandex launched its own Android app store earlier this year and is now releasing its own mobile browser for Android smartphones and the iPad.

Yandex's mobile browser puts its own search engine front and centre, and features a combined search and address bar located at the bottom of the screen, just above the keyboard. The iPad version opens websites to the right of the screen while keeping the search page open to the left.

Yandex's data compression feature, Turbo, which it licensed from Norwegian browser-maker Opera, will help the browser when it's faced with on a slow connection. Versions for the iPhone and for Android tablets are scheduled for release this autumn.

The mobile browser, which is compatible with devices running Ice Cream Sandwich and later versions of Android, is available from Google Play, the App Store and its own Yandex.Store, which the company launched in February to take app purchases through its own payment systems.

Although it has taken may leaves from Google's book, including its own bug bountry program, it has not released an OS. Also, unlike Google, which scans for malicious submissions itself, Yandex relies on Russian security vendor Kaspersky to scan its submissions. Yandex is also a lot smaller, with around 95 million users across the world. 

Last October, Yandex also launched its Chromium-based Yandex desktop browser and later integrated Opera's Turbo. Its mobile browser borrows technology and features from its desktop cousin, according to the company, and the latter is now used by eight million people.