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GDS recommends Samsung Internet browser tests

02/03/18

Adds mobile browser to channels subject to testing recommendations in Service Manual

The Government Digital Service (GDS) has added Samsung Internet to the list of mobile browsers to be tested as part of meeting the Digital Service Standard.

GOV.UK website on Samsung smartphoneIt said the move reflects the growing popularity of the default browser for Samsung devices, which now has a UK market share of 2.7% and accounts for 3.2% of traffic to the GOV.UK platform.

As part of the six-monthly update of the Digital Service Manual GDS has included Samsung Internet on the list of browsers against which the performance of any services based on GOV.UK should be tested. For a browser to be ‘compliant’, GOV.UK has to look as good as in any other, and to be ‘functional’ it may not look as good but should still work effectively.

One of the factors behind the move was the decision by Google Analytics in August of last year to distinguish between Samsung Internet and Chrome for Android, which are both built on the Chromium open source code.

A GDS blogpost on the issue says: “In the future, there may be a fundamental difference in how pages render or function on Samsung Internet and Chrome for Android. That’s why we think testing this new, popular browser is important.”

It also says it is important that there is competition between browsers, and that it will consider further changes to reflect developments in the market.

Image from GOV.UK, Open Government Licence v3.0

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