Opera Mobile: Another step forward
By on June 15th, 2009


Opera has always been a strong force in mobile and desktop browsers. In mobile browsers, Opera has been ahead in innovation and user experience since many years. Continuing the trend, Opera has just released the first beta of Opera Mobile v9.7 which looks pretty good, in spite of new challenges posed by the likes of Skyfire, etc..

The current stable version of Opera Mobile available for all WinMo versions is v8.65.

Opera Mobile is a powerful, full featured, mobile web browser that works on Symbian and Windows Mobile devices. Though the beta is free to install and use, it is a paid application. Opera Mobile allows complete PC-like experience of Web browsing on your WinMo device. In Opera Mobile, all the rendering is done on the client side so you can access interactive web services including ones using AJAX.

Opera Mini is a mobile web browser that works on almost any phone — from cheap phones to smartphones like BlackBerry, Palm, or Windows Mobile. Opera Mini is free and costs nothing to download. Opera Mini utilizes a remote server to pre-process and compress Web pages before sending them to your phone. That way, you can get Web content very quickly and cheaply.

Opera - Home Opera - Options Opera - Full screen browsing

Opera introduces Opera Widgets, which are small, handy Web applications that run locally on you phone, giving you one-click access to your favorite web services. The Widget manager is an add-on to the browser, so the browser must be installed in order for the widget manager to work. In the current beta, rotating widgets do not work properly. This ofcourse would be fixed in upcoming releases.

Opera Mobile 9.7 defaults to full Web page viewing and allows users to pan and zoom into their desired content in just a few clicks. Also, with a click, it allows you to save your selected content and view it later offline. In the Full-screen mode, you can use the entire screen for browsing. Full-screen mode is off by default, but is easily toggled by pressing *. It can also be selected from the menu. For the Fit to screen mode, Opera’s Small-Screen Rendering (SSR) technology reformats Web pages intended for desktop browsing to fit the screen of your device. This mode is on by default, and is toggled by pressing #.

In the latest beta, Opera Mobile brings Opera Turbo which, as claimed, compresses the network traffic by up to 80%, saving data traffic and speeding up the browsing experience. Opera also claims that v9.7 is the most standards compliant browser available. Opera Mobile also has nifty features like address auto-complete, Password Manager, and pop-up handler.

Download the Opera Mobile beta release, and widget-manager from the following links.

Author: Abhishek Baxi
Abhishek Baxi is an independent technology columnist for several international publications and a digital consultant. He speaks incessantly on Twitter (@baxiabhishek) and dons the role of Editor-in-Chief here at Techie Buzz.

Abhishek Baxi has written and can be contacted at abhishek@techie-buzz.com.

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