Tomomi Imura

Tomomi Imura

An Open Web advocate and front-end engineer, who loves everything mobile, and writes about HTML5, CSS, JS, UX, tech events, gadgets, etc. She unintentionally got 15min of fame by creating The HTTP Status Cats. Also, the opinions expressed here are solely her own and do not express the views or opinions of my employer.

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WebKit Comparison on CSS3

Bitstream has launched a new mobile browser called Bolt, which is a J2ME browser and use WebKit as a rendering engine.

Instead of writing a review on this new WebKit browser, I decided to just do some quick CSS3 test on variety of WebKit browsers!
If you rather read the review, I recommend WAP Review. There’s a very detailed great article on Bolt there.

WebKit browsers I used

  1. WebKit Nightly for Mac OS X (as a Control)
    Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; U; Intel Mac OS X 10_5_4; en-us) AppleWebKit/528.11+ (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0dp1 Safari/526.11.2
  2. iPhone Safari
    Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 2_2 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/525.18.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.1.1 Mobile/5G77 Safari/525.20
  3. Chrome by Google
    Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US) AppleWebKit/525.19 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/ Safari/525.19
  4. HTC Dream Android
    Mozilla/5.0 (Linux; U; Android 1.0; en-us; dream) AppleWebKit/525.10+ (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.0.4 Mobile Safari/523.12.2
    • Nokia N95 8GB
      Mozilla/5.0 (SymbianOS/9.2 U; Series60/3.1 NokiaN95_8GB/10.0.021; Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 ) AppleWebKit/413 (KHTML, like Gecko) Safari/413
    • Bolt 0.74 on Nokia N95 8GB
      Mozilla/5.0 (X11; 78; CentOS; US-en) AppleWebKit/527+ (KHTML, like Gecko) Bolt/0.741 Version/3.0 Safari/523.15</ol>

CSS3 Styling I tested

.opracity {opacity: .5;}
.textShadow {text-shadow: #777 2px 2px 2px;}
.textShadows2 {text-shadow: rgba(0,0,255, .7) 3px 3px 2px, rgba(255,0,0, .7) -3px -3px 2px;
.ellipsis{text-overflow: ellipsis; width: 200px; overflow: hidden;}
.borderRadius {background-color: #666; color: #fff; width: 200px; padding: 10px; -webkit-border-radius: 10px;}
.boxShodow{-webkit-box-shadow: #000 3px 2px 6px; width: 200px; padding:5px;}
.strokeAndFill{-webkit-text-stroke: 1px green; -webkit-text-fill-color: #ccc; font-size: 2em; }
.borderImg{-webkit-border-image: url(button.gif) 0 13 0 13 stretch stretch; border-width: 0px 13px; padding: 5px 0 7px;}


WebKit Nightly – This is how everything should look like.

WebKit Nightly

iPhone Safari


Chrome and Android Browser


Nokia “Web” and Bolt on N95 8GB

Nokia Bolt

note: Android’s actual screen res is 320×480. The screenshot is not an actual size. (Obviously this is a photograph!). Also the screenshot for iPhone is from emulator but I tested on an actual device as well.


Properties WebKit Ntly iPhone Chrome Android Nokia Bolt
opacity Y Y Y Y N N
text-shodow Y Y☆ N N N N
text-overflow (ellipsis) Y Y Y Y Y N★
border-radius Y Y Y Y N N
-webkit-box-shodow Y Y Y Y N N★
-webkit-text-stroke Y Y N N N N
-webkit-text-fill Y Y Y Y N Y
-webkit-border-image Y Y Y Y N Y

☆ Basic feature is spported, but not multiple shodows.

★ Not degraded gracefully. Contents become unreadable so should be avoided.

Additional Notes

Besides the CSS3 test, it is noticeable that Bolt does not honer css font size, weight and header with H tag. This is happening to another J2ME browser, Opera Mini 4 (not tested here since Opera Mini is not WebKit-based). Additionally, like Opera Mini, Bolt uses proxy for rendering and compression. Data is passed through proxy before sending to device.

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