Kiwi Browser is a fully open-source web browser for Android.
Kiwi is based on Chromium. Easily switch to Kiwi without having to painstakingly learn a new interface or break your existing browsing habits.
Among other functionalities, Kiwi Browser supports:
- Night Mode (another implementation than Chromium)
- Support for Chrome Extensions
- Bottom address bar It also includes performance improvements (partial rasterization of tiles, etc)
The browser is licensed under the same license as Chromium, which means that you are allowed to create derivatives of the browser.
Make sure to properly attribute the code to this repository (don't just replace with your name)
Table of contents
- Additional help
15 April 2018 - First Kiwi Browser release.
15 April 2019 - Kiwi Browser gets support for Chrome Extensions.
17 April 2020 - Kiwi Browser goes fully open-source.
This code is up-to-date and is matching the build on the Play Store.
The new builds are done from the open-source edition directly to the Play Store.
There are thousands of hours of work in this repository and thousands of files changed.
Contributions are welcome and encouraged.
If you want your code to be integrated into Kiwi, open a merge request, I (and/or a member of the community) can review the code with you and push it to the Play Store.
If you create your own browser or a mod, make sure to change the browser name and icon in
chrome/android/java/res_chromium/values/channel_constants.xml and translation strings (search and replace Kiwi in all
*.grd and all
When replacing the app icon, make sure to add the new icon files in their respective
chrome/android/java/res/mipmap folders(mdpi, hdpi etc) and also update the AndroidManifest.xml.
The reference build machine is using Ubuntu 19.04 (also tested using Ubuntu 18.04 and Ubuntu 19.10).
The minimum system requirements are 2 vCPUs, 7.5 GB Memory.
You can use a virtual machine, an AWS VM, or a Google Cloud VM.
Getting the source-code and environment
To build Kiwi Browser you can directly clone the repository, as we have packed all dependencies already:
In ~ (your home directory) run:
git clone https://chromium.googlesource.com/chromium/tools/depot_tools.git
and edit the file ~/.bashrc to add at the very end
Validate the changes by running:
This will give you access to one utility called gclient (as in "Google client")
Create a directory called ~/chromium/, and in ~/chromium/ run:
git clone https://github.com/kiwibrowser/dependencies.git .cipd cp ~/chromium/.cipd/.gclient ~/chromium/ cp ~/chromium/.cipd/.gclient_entries ~/chromium/ git clone https://github.com/kiwibrowser/src.git
At this stage, in ~/chromium/ you will have the .cipd folder, and a folder with the Kiwi Browser source-code called src.
Setting up dependencies
To be able to build Kiwi Browser, you need python and OpenJDK (OpenJDK to create Java bindings for Android):
sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install python openjdk-8-jdk-headless libncurses5
We want to be sure to use Java 1.8 in order to not get compilation errors (lint and errorprone):
sudo update-java-alternatives --set java-1.8.0-openjdk-amd64
then run the following commands in ~/chromium/src:
bash install-build-deps.sh --no-chromeos-fonts build/linux/sysroot_scripts/install-sysroot.py --arch=i386 build/linux/sysroot_scripts/install-sysroot.py --arch=amd64
These commands will install all necessary system packages using apt-get and gather a minimal build filesystem.
Preparing a signing key
APKs (application packages) on Android need to be signed by developers in order to be distributed.
To generate a key:
keytool -genkey -v -keystore ~/chromium/keystore.jks -alias production -keyalg RSA -keysize 2048 -validity 10000 -storepass HERE_YOUR_ANDROID_KEYSTORE_PASSWORD -keypass HERE_YOUR_ANDROID_KEYSTORE_PASSWORD
Configuring the build type and platform
mkdir -p ~/chromium/src/out/android_arm
Create a file called args.gn in ~/chromium/src/out/android_arm/ with this content:
target_os = "android" target_cpu = "arm" # <---- can be arm, arm64, x86 or x64 is_debug = false is_java_debug = false android_channel = "stable" is_official_build = true is_component_build = false is_chrome_branded = false is_clang = true symbol_level = 1 use_unofficial_version_number = false android_default_version_code = "158" android_keystore_name = "production" android_keystore_password = "HERE_YOUR_ANDROID_KEYSTORE_PASSWORD" android_keystore_path = "../../../keystore.jks" android_default_version_name = "Quadea" fieldtrial_testing_like_official_build = true icu_use_data_file = false enable_iterator_debugging = false google_api_key = "KIWIBROWSER" google_default_client_id = "42.apps.kiwibrowser.com" google_default_client_secret = "KIWIBROWSER_NOT_SO_SECRET" use_official_google_api_keys = true ffmpeg_branding = "Chrome" proprietary_codecs = true enable_hevc_demuxing = true enable_nacl = false enable_wifi_display = false enable_widevine = false enable_google_now = true enable_ac3_eac3_audio_demuxing = true enable_iterator_debugging = false enable_mse_mpeg2ts_stream_parser = true enable_remoting = false rtc_use_h264 = false rtc_use_lto = false use_openh264 = false v8_use_external_startup_data = true update_android_aar_prebuilts = true use_thin_lto = true enable_extensions = true enable_plugins = true
You can replace Android keystore password and Android keystore keypath with the data for your Android keystore (or you can generate a new key).
Preparing the first build
To prepare initial setup run from ~/chromium/src:
then generate the build files in ~/chromium/src:
gn gen out/android_arm
Alternatively you can use: gn args out/android_arm
Compiling Kiwi Browser
To compile, use the command:
ninja -C out/android_arm chrome_public_apk
you'll have the output APK in ~/chromium/src/out/android_arm/apks/ChromePublic.apk
then you can run the APK on your phone.
You need to have the symbols for the version that crashed, the symbols can be generated using:
components/crash/content/tools/generate_breakpad_symbols.py --build-dir=out/lnx64 --symbols-dir=/tmp/my_symbols/ --binary=out/android_arm/lib.unstripped/libchrome.so --clear --verbose
If you have the crash information from logcat:
out/lnx64/microdump_stackwalk -s /tmp/dump.dmp /tmp/my_symbols/
If you have the crash information in a tombstone:
./third_party/android_ndk/ndk-stack -sym out/android_x86/lib.unstripped -dump tombstone
You can use Google Chrome to debug using the devtools console.
In case the devtools console doesn't work (error 404), the solution is to use chrome://inspect (Inspect fallback) or change SHA1 in build/util/LASTCHANGE
and confirm the change using:
rm out/android_arm/gen/components/version_info/version_info_values.h out/android_x86/gen/components/version_info/version_info_values.h out/android_arm/gen/build/util/webkit_version.h out/android_x86/gen/build/util/webkit_version.h out/android_arm/gen/chrome/common/chrome_version.h out/android_x86/gen/chrome/common/chrome_version.h
Optimizing binary size
If you want to optimize of the final APK, you can look at the size of each individual component using command:
./tools/binary_size/supersize archive chrome.size --apk-file out/android_arm/apks/ChromePublic.apk -v ./tools/binary_size/supersize html_report chrome.size --report-dir size-report -v
The browser is getting paid by search engines for every search done using Kiwi Browser.
Depending on the search engine choice, requests may go via Kiwibrowser / Kiwisearchservices servers. This is for invoicing our search partners and provide alternative search results (e.g. bangs aka "shortcuts").
In some countries, the browser displays sponsored tiles or news on the homepage.
User data (browsing, navigation, passwords, accounts) is not collected because we have no interest to know what you do in the browser. Our main goal is to convince you to use a search engine partner, and this search engine makes money / new partnerships and shares revenue with us.
- During year 2020, the goal of the project is to make maintenance fixes and security updates.
If there is an issue or bug that you want to be included to Kiwi, please open an issue ticket pointing to the related Chromium bug or commit. Be precise, there are dozen of thousands of changes in Chromium.
- During 2021, Kiwi Browser will switch to a new branch called Kiwi Browser Next with a quite automated Chromium rebasing system.
Have fun with Kiwi!