Opera Mini for the iPhone? What’s the point?

Today's announcement that we are showing off Opera Mini for the iPhone at MWC (yes, we will show Opera Mini actually running on the iPhone) has really caught people's attention.

But while a lot of people are excited, a small minority seems to wonder what the point is. Why does anyone need a choice in browsers on the iPhone, and what does Opera Mini in particular bring to the table? …

  1. Choice: Choice is good. If you think Safari is the best thing since sliced bread, by all means keep using Safari. Other people may choose differently. Let's respect each other's right to choose, OK?
  2. Features: Opera Mini brings a different set of features to the iPhone. Some may prefer Safari's features, while others may prefer the features Opera Mini offers.
  3. Usage patterns: This is party related to what features are offered, but also the way common features are implemented. Safari handles things in one particular way, and Opera Mini might do it differently. Which one do you prefer? The choice is yours.
  4. Save money: Opera Mini compresses everything up to 90%. This means that you can save a lot of money if you pay for data usage!
  5. Connection speed: Opera Mini's compression means that you can download pages faster, especially if your network connection is not perfect. Our tests show that Opera Mini is up to 6 times faster than Safari!

There are also reports of mobile networks struggling under the increase in data traffic, causing slowdowns. With data compressed up to 90%, that slowdown will be less noticeable. You will also have much faster browsing in areas with poor 3G/WiFi coverage.

Your mobile network operator will thank you for easing the load on his network! 😉

And finally, let's not forget that you can already download alternative user interfaces for Safari. Why are those there if the standard Safari browser is all anyone will ever need?

Opera's slogan is "the best internet experience on any device". We may not be on all devices yet, but we want to be on as many of them as possible. That includes the iPhone. The only question now is whether Apple will accept Opera Mini into the App Store or not.

We are ready. Are you?

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91 thoughts on “Opera Mini for the iPhone? What’s the point?

  1. Thanks, but just because you get emotional when posting comments that does not mean everybody else does.Besides, sorry but could you please write on topic, and not comment on other peoples posts. Firstly it's boring secondly its lame.

  2. Your mobile network operator will thank you for easing the load on his network! AT&T has a hard time with the iPhone and other smart devices, I would think any carrier would have the same trouble with all that bandwidth requested from each phone

  3. Why isn't it Opera Mobile? It is suited for such hardware and it would have a widget manager (widget manager based off of choose opera's post's info).

  4. I won't be getting an iPhone but great to see this!@DanielI guess Mobile is most often delivered via business contracts (no hope there!), and to develop a paid-for version would cater for unlikely customers.@LawrenceAs you have admitted to 'fanboy' status, and therefore being utterly brainwashed (perhaps to your liking :)), your further points are rendered somewhat moot, but valid opinions none-the-less.While the iPhone is a closed development platform, many have and will argue for a long time to come that the Web isn't.Continuing on Twitter is perhaps not a bad idea, you wouldn't be able to fit long rants into 140 characters and so conciseness would be the story of the day. I give up now…

  5. Operanese writes:Safari in iphone can't download. That really bad.the youtube application can't watch in low quality mode like in nokia using real media. So i think apple need to know that we need this feature and i hope they add this feature next firmware'opera are the most innovative company for web browser, i using opera for years, and opera is the first browser introducing tab on net browser. And the download interface Is the best. But still mozilla had the add on for cuztomose function, and that's rock.

  6. Originally posted by Indyan:

    Pallab De # 10. February 2010, 05:51
    All this is fine, but back in Oct JvT had revealed that development for iPhone pattern was halted due to restrictive license. So what changed?

    Good question. Opera just purchased AdMarvel so the timing is interesting considering Apple bought Quattro Ad company. We'll soon see Apple overtake Microshafts market Cap. (no wonder Gates dipped out so fast!)Google+Ad=$ Apple+Ad=$Opera+Ad=$Opera+AdMarvel+iPhone=$$$Gotta be honest on this – No wonder Opera doesn't make an Ad Blocker worth a flip… its not in Opera's interest!Cheers

  7. Thanks for providing your input on this topic Haavard. Ive been mentioning it the past couple days on the Desktop team blogs, but no response. Then John T. announces today! YES!Have you seen this yet? Its Opera Mini on the iPhone.You guys are late, Ill just stick my laptop in my pants pocketand take it out and use it as a phone with this interface! J/K.In all seriousness Haavard, Ive not used Mini. Is this what we can expect?http://interactiveiphone.com/Cheers!

  8. Originally posted by Purdi:

    Purdi # 10. February 2010, 05:22

    Originally posted by anonymous:

    i don't want the same thing on my iPhone, low res compressed images and server side mashed up code, i want the experience as it was intended to be

    Does the iPhone support Flash? If you are going to criticize Opera Mini for not showing the web as it was intended to be, then surely the same should apply to Apple!

    Hypocrisy much?

    Good point. Does Opera Mini support flash like Firefox's Fennec supposedly does?Cheers!

  9. Originally posted by Chas4:

    Charles Schloss # 10. February 2010, 06:52

    There are also reports of mobile networks struggling under the increase in data traffic, causing slowdowns. With data compressed up to 90%, that slowdown will be less noticeable. You will also have much faster browsing in areas with poor 3G/WiFi coverage.

    Your mobile network operator will thank you for easing the load on his network!

    Yes, America was slow to adopt 3G compared to EU and we also have more population than a number of EU's countries combined, and are spread out everywhere. We are suburban sprawl, which kills networking because of humongous infrastructure overhead. I believe 2 years of ATT's infrastructure updates would rebuild Norway, Finland, Denmark, Scotland, +….. from the ground up.Our 2 most densely populated cities are NY and SF, which happens to be the worst place to own an iPhone. I really hope Opera Mini comes to iPhone, as Ill be the first to install.The bigger question (considering I truly don't believe Apple will allow Opera in the App store, Period.) is will Opera have the gonads to provide Mini to jail breakers through Cydia and other communities. I don't see why Opera would not consider this and truly wonder why they have not already done this.Cheers!

  10. Sumit writes:No need for this post at all. Opera is coming to iPhone, is strong enough for any argument.OMFG!! OPERA IS COMING TO IPHONE!!!! YUPEEEEE!!!!!!!!

  11. Originally posted by digitalinksmudge:

    Good point. Does Opera Mini support flash like Firefox's Fennec supposedly does?

    What on earth are you going on about? You clearly didn't get my point at all. My point was that he started criticizing other products of not giving him the "experience as it was meant to be", and I pointed out the hypocrisy of that statement.Are you drunk?

    Gotta be honest on this – No wonder Opera doesn't make an Ad Blocker worth a flip… its not in Opera's interest!

    Again, are you drunk or something? Mozilla doesn't make an ad blocker either. In fact, Firefox has even LESS of an ad blocker than Opera.If you are crazy enough to think that Opera doesn't have an ad blocker like AdBlock (which is NOT made by Mozilla, by the way) because they bought AdMarvel, then you must be insane enough to think that they've been planning to buy AdMarvel before it even existed!Also, AdMarvel is a MOBILE ad company. Why are you whining about the desktop version?The sheer idiocy of your statement becomes apparent when you realize that if Opera had AdBlock built in, they would have been sued into oblivion by site owners. There's a reason they are calling what they have a CONTENT blocker rather than an AD blocker, and that's to not piss off site owners.Now go away :troll:

  12. To run SWF files you need either full Adobe Flash player or Adobe Flash Lite player on your phone. Full Flash player is too heavy for almost all mobile devices, and Flash Lite is still somewhat rare. Maybe in future it's possible to embed Flash Lite into browser, and to run SWF applications (games, menus & adds) in full mobile browsers like Opera Mobile, but it's still somewhat remote. For J2ME browsers like Opera Mini this is even more distant future.And somewhat same thing is with so called "flash videos" using FLV format. Youtube does not give .flv for mobile phones. It just trancode them into some other video format.

  13. Purdi,Its better to be nice. Haavard has provided us all with interesting insight, and a sharp view of Opera's possible future.I asked you if FF mobile would support flash as I have not used it. I even mentioned a mock up of Opera Mini on iPhone because Ive never seen Opera Mini. That should clarify that I do not know if Opera Mini will support flash.I stated my position of Opera's future use of ads, even if its not popular, I stand by it. I am still unable to get Opera ad blocking method to consistently work on numerous sites I use. My experience is exactly what I said. Not so interested in personal attacks, but I am interested in Opera.Next time I see your posts that interest me, Ill consider your your last post above, and kindly refrain from asking you an honest question.Once again, Thanks for bringing this up Haavard. Im an iPhone user, an Opera user of 10 years, and Id love to have Opera on my phone. I educate as much as I can… Ive even visited Opera's San Diego offices. Ill be going to San Fran soon!Thanks for your hard work Opera!Cheers!

  14. Originally posted by serola:

    Serola # 11. February 2010, 01:35
    To run SWF files you need either full Adobe Flash player or Adobe Flash Lite player on your phone. Full Flash player is too heavy for almost all mobile devices, and Flash Lite is still somewhat rare. Maybe in future it's possible to embed Flash Lite into browser, and to run SWF applications (games, menus & adds) in full mobile browsers like Opera Mobile, but it's still somewhat remote. For J2ME browsers like Opera Mini this is even more distant future.

    And somewhat same thing is with so called "flash videos" using FLV format. Youtube does not give .flv for mobile phones. It just trancode them into some other video format.

    Thanks for you considerate answer Serola. I heard about possible iPhone Apps implementing some kind of Flash Lite, and the possibility to tap into them to get the "full" flash experience. Maybe its the FLV format you spoke of. Interesting and insightful post, thanks for providing valuable input.Cheers!

  15. Originally posted by digitalinksmudge:

    I stated my position of Opera's future use of ads, even if its not popular, I stand by it. I am still unable to get Opera ad blocking method to consistently work on numerous sites I use. My experience is exactly what I said.

    although it's out of topic, you can find a complete guide to adblocking in Tamil blog:http://my.opera.com/Tamil/blog/ad-blockfor me the list on the page works on most sites..

  16. I wonder if AT&T asked them to restart this project? Not long ago, they commissioned a tweak known as the ATT.NET browser (which is based from Opera Mini code).Still, I am glad to see renewed effort in a web-hungry market that has been abandoned by Mozilla. Being fair to the iPhone, each user typically browses more than most other phone users. Significant penetration of this web-hungry market would be a major victory for Opera.

  17. Who cares? I'll use any decent phone that I can have Operamini on. I won't even consider the iPhone for that reason alone.

  18. Originally posted by digitalinksmudge:

    I stated my position of Opera's future use of ads, even if its not popular, I stand by it.

    No, you made up some insane conspiracy theory about the AdMarvel acquisition.

    I am still unable to get Opera ad blocking method to consistently work on numerous sites I use.

    What on earth does your incompetence have to do with anything? Opera's content blocker works fine for me. But of course, instead of realizing that you have messed up, you start spewing insane conspiracy theories!

  19. @Aadil, you may not care, but there are plenty of iPhone owners who use Opera Desktop. After all, Opera has a lot more in common with Apple's software than Microsoft's. It's a no-brainer they might want something classy and fast as well.From what I've read so far on this move, Opera consider this a viable attempt at getting a better browser onto the iPhone and not merely 'cheek', as this is not written in Java like the others and so can run natively without installing a Java environment (read: Opera see this version of Mini as being completely within the rules set out by Apple for developers).[OFF TOPIC]Content blocker works fine for me too, but unlike with AdBlock, I had to find a filter-set by myself, and though not taxing for me, for the average user? of course! You have to be blind or stupid not to see the difference. 'Incompetence' doesn't really come into it, it's more a question of how much time you're prepared to spend on a particular problem.Content Blocker can use a predefined filter-set, but really it's not designed primarily for that use. It's for opportunistic blocking of particularly annoying content, not systematic Ad-cleansing.Which you prefer is yet another question, as is why there is this difference in the first place.

  20. Originally posted by Purdi:

    What on earth does your incompetence have to do with anything? Opera's content blocker works fine for me. But of course, instead of realizing that you have messed up, you start spewing insane conspiracy theories!

    *Whisper to someone (just so you know I didn't do this by accident)*

  21. Originally posted by Chas4:

    "but there are plenty of iPhone owners who use Opera Desktop"

    Does sound like a mistake doesn't it. What I meant by 'plenty' was 'enough to disagree with you'. And what I meant in general was that not everybody is a fanboy and most can juggle two 'philosophies' at once anyway… It's still not clear I know.

  22. Originally posted by experttease:

    I had to find a filter-set by myself, and though not taxing for me, for the average user? of course!

    Thanks, a friend helped me with the list and getting the blocker set up correctly. It works great now! The average user like myself might get frustrated, and with that in consideration I think it would be nice to have a simpler method. Ive been right clicking and blocking ads for a year now, which has involved more input than actually using Opera for what its intended for – to browse the web!Cheers!

  23. Originally posted by experttease:

    I had to find a filter-set by myself, and though not taxing for me, for the average user? of course!

    Thanks, a friend helped me with the list, and getting the blocker set up correctly. It works great now. The average user like myself might get frustrated, and with that in consideration I think it would be nice to have a simpler method. Ive been right clicking and blocking ads for a year now, which has involved more input than actually using Opera for what its intended for – to browse the web!Cheers!

  24. Originally posted by experttease:

    I had to find a filter-set by myself, and though not taxing for me, for the average user? of course!

    Thanks, a friend helped me with the list and getting the blocker set up correctly. It works great now! The average user like myself might get frustrated, and with that in consideration I think it would be nice to have a simpler method. Ive been right clicking and blocking ads for over a year now, which has involved more input than actually using Opera for what its intended for – to browse the web!Cheers!

  25. Originally posted by experttease:

    I had to find a filter-set by myself, and though not taxing for me, for the average user? of course!

    Thanks, a friend helped me with the list and getting the blocker set up correctly. It works great now! The average user like myself might get frustrated, and with that in consideration I think it would be nice to have a simpler method. Ive been right clicking and blocking ads for a year now, which has involved more input than actually using Opera for what its intended for – to browse the web!Cheers!

  26. Originally posted by experttease:

    there are plenty of iPhone owners who use Opera Desktop

    Actually here we come to "features" mentioned by Haavard. Thanks to Opera Link, it's possible to backup and share, not only bookmarks and speed dials, but also notes and searches between all Opera browsers. At the moment I have found the shared searches as the best thing about Opera Link. For bookmarks there are also other options, but shared searches is surprisingly useful 🙂

  27. @digitalinksmudge: please delete duplicate posts. Connection problem?Current option for Opera Desktop users: Real VNC for iPhone

  28. Originally posted by experttease:

    Content Blocker can use a predefined filter-set, but really it's not designed primarily for that use. It's for opportunistic blocking of particularly annoying content, not systematic Ad-cleansing.

    Well said. Cheers!

  29. Originally posted by hellspork:

    Cutting Spoon # 13. February 2010, 16:37
    @digitalinksmudge: please delete duplicate posts. Connection problem?

    Sorry about that. I don't see a delete link below my duplicate posts while I'm signed in, only on the very last post. Possibly a time limit to delete. Maybe Haavard will delete if he has time.Cheers!

  30. Huh. You're right! My previous post on this page has no edit/delete facility either! This could be a factor of time, or different edit permissions on some staff blogs? I heard from a mod that they can't delete a person's posts unless they ban them…?EDIT: Must be like a time thing, then.

  31. Originally posted by Cutting Spoon:

    I heard from a mod that they can't delete a person's posts unless they ban them…?

    From what I have seen in the forum, that is not the case. I have seen it more than once, BTW.

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