So far, Windows Mobile user were able to either user Opera Mobile, the native smartphone browser version from Opera or Opera Mini, a Java-based browser which required J2ME on Windows Mobile phones. However, today Opera Software launched a native version of Opera Mini 5 Beta for Windows Mobile 5- and 6-based handsets. By integrating Opera Mini with the Windows Mobile platform, Opera is able to deliver an optimized version of the popular Opera Mini browser that dramatically improves performance and the overall user experience. While Opera Mini traditionally requires Java, the new Windows Mobile version does not, which means that Opera Mini will work on any Windows Mobile phone.
The Opera Mini 5 Beta for Windows Mobile includes the same rich feature set as the Java-based version. Renowned features, including tabbed browsing, the password manager, bookmarks and Speed Dial, are built-in to deliver convenience while on-the-go.
One of Opera Mini's major benefits is that it compresses data traffic by up to 90 percent, resulting in significantly improved page-loading and speed. This results in a dramatically reduced data load, which can translate to lower browsing costs when on a pay-per-MB data plan or when on expensive roaming.
"Windows Mobile deserves a mobile browser that looks better, handles better and delivers better than the default browser," said Dag Olav Norem, Vice President of Products, Opera Software. "Even though Opera has 50 million satisfied Opera Mini users, we always seek ways to improve our browser for each and every mobile phone user out there. Now, we are pleased to offer the world's most popular mobile Web browser as a native Windows Mobile application."
It's not yet clear if this will be the end of Opera Mobile for Windows phones or if Opera will unite Opera Mobile and Opera Mini in a single platform.
In any way, Windows Mobile 5.0 and 6.x users can download Opera Mini directly to their phone for free from Opera. As mentioned, Java is not required on anymore to run Opera Mini on Windows Mobile smartphones.
Cheers ~ Arne