Puffin vs Photon Flash Browser
I have used and tested a number of Flash browsers for my new iPad 4 and my Nexus 7 Android tablet. Puffin and Photon are probably the best Flash player out there though each has its pros and cons. Overall I like the Photon Browser best for many reasons. Mostly, Photon delivers a much more consistent and reliable experience as well as the best video frame rate for Flash videos. Although, Photon price is $2 more than Puffin on iOS app store, I find the extra cost to be well worth it.
I started out using Puffin Web Browser at first but finds that during peak hours which is when I mostly use it, I either cannot get connected to their servers or the videos started getting really jerky to the point that it is unwatchable. Also, during my time of using it, there were some updates from Puffin that cause the browser to crash upon startup. This becomes incredibly frustrating for the user. Puffin also suffers from several problems including un-synchronized sound or in some cases no sound at all. Also, there were several times when I needed to play some Flash videos and I could not even connect to their servers with a “Connecting…” message that just hangs there forever. Crashes are also frequent. When it does play and connect via its proxy, I would say the quality of the Flash browsing is good. If you need to browser websites or browse Flash pages, then Puffin is a good choice. However, it is less reliable if you want to play games or videos. Not being able to be consistent and usable is a big thumbs down for me. Also, by using a proxy technology, you have less privacy since all traffic goes through its servers.
Like Puffin, I have used Photon browser for quite some time. Although I started out using Puffin at first, I ended up switching to Photon for my default Flash browser. Photon has been reliable and consistent in terms of connection and Flash experience. It is less user friendly mainly because it provides a lot more settings for the users to play. So for an amateur user, it takes some time to learn it but once you get the hang of it which is not too hard, then it becomes really powerful. The bandwidth settings on the browser allows me to adapt my Flash experience on different types of network as I use my iPad on an LTE network and in hotspots which can really deliver spotty Wifi. However, Photon seems to be able to handle or make Flash works well on these network. The iPhone version works really well too even on my old 3GS on a 3G network. Unlike Puffin, Photon supports native mode browsing and function just like Safari without the need to pass traffic through its servers when you dont need Flash. I have been able to use Photon to watch my Colbert Report on Hulu. It has not miss a beat since I started using it.
Overall, if I were to review and compare Puffin vs Photon, I would rate Puffin a 3.5 star and Photon a 4.5 star out of 5 star.