OSLO, Norway--At a press conference here today, Opera announced it will release a beta version of Opera Mobile for Android within 30 days and showed off how it works. The company has two mobile browsers, the full-fledged Opera Mobile that renders Web pages on its own and the lighter-weight Opera Mini that relies on an Opera server to boil down Web pages into a more compact form. Opera Mobile is mostly used on Symbian and Windows Mobile phones, but it's coming to Android, too.
One feature of Opera Mobile for Android is hardware acceleration for the user interface. That means faster response for scrolling and zooming as well as smooth actions such as the animated arrival of a control panel. To the left is Android mobile running on a Motorola Droid; to the right is a computer running Android in emulation and showing elements of the user interface governed by hardware acceleration.
Clicking the tools button at the bottom of Opera Mobile for Android reveals a plethora of options for using the browser. Settings permits the user to enable various settings, such as Turbo mode that uses Opera servers to compress Web pages for faster delivery and more efficient network usage. Using Turbo cuts network usage by 80 percent, Opera said. At the top of the screen is the Speed Dial mode where users can quickly access frequently used Web pages.