Samsung is bringing an update to its oft-forgotten browser app that allows ad-free Web surfing, provided a dedicated third-party ad-blocking app is installed.
In a way, Samsung Internet is pretty much like a third-party Web browsing app in itself, too. The app with the globe icon that typically comes preinstalled on all Samsung devices usually gets replaced by Google's Chrome or some other browser anyway.
Its latest set of features, however, may bring back some users who are concerned about Google tracking their every move while browsing the Internet.
The Samsung Internet app, currently with an impressive 4.2 out of 5 rating, is at its fourth iteration and available for download from Google Play. Given a chance, Samsung's browser actually compares relatively well to Google's offering, which also has 4.2 star rating on the Play Store.
Now, Samsung's browser allows users to completely avoid seeing any advertisements when they go online on their Samsung mobile phone.
"Samsung Internet provides you with less visual clutter during your everyday browsing. Take advantage of content blocking extensions to free your Web pages from unnecessary contents," reads the app description on the Google Play Store.
Samsung calls the extensions "content-blocking filters" and users will have to download those ad-blocking apps separately in order to make use of Samsung Internet's ad-blocking feature. It wasn't an easy option to build into their app, however.
The OEM previously launched the feature for devices on Android 6.0, but Google pulled Samsung's partner app, Adblock Plus, from the Play Store. As a result, Samsung Internet lost a feature as well. Fortunately, Google backtracked on its decision on such apps, and now Samsung's browser is compatible with a variety of ad blockers.
To provide even more security and privacy, Samsung has also included a much more robust "Secret Mode" that stores saved pages, bookmarks and browser history with the same encryption technology it uses for Knox. Samsung device owners can also use their fingerprint to authenticate Secret Mode and start browsing the Internet securely.
This update is available for devices with Android 5.0 or newer. Users with older devices will not be able to use Samsung Internet's latest features. Samsung devices that are good to go with this latest update include: Galaxy S7 edge, S7, Note5, S6 edge+, S6 edge, S6, S6 Active, Note4, S5, S5 Neo, S5 Active, S5 Sports, S5 LTE A, Note3, S4, S4 Duos, S4 Active, S4 LTE A, A7, A8, A5x, A7x and A9x.