Opera’s Mobile Browser May Find A Home On Android


Opera announced today that it has ported a mini-version of its mobile browser over to the Android operating system. The company reports that the task wasn’t easy. Android’s SDK is still being flushed out, and there’s no hardware to test the browser on, but as the mobile browser world gets more competitive, Opera may be the perfect fit for Google’s (NSDQ: GOOG) Android. Think about it: companies using Symbian or Windows Mobile handsets have obvious default browser options, but the Register points out today that handset manufacturers looking at Android might be more open to pre-installation of Opera. Opera has had a difficult time finding its way on to phones. Other than the limited number of cases, in which Opera is pre-installed, in most cases customers have had to seek out the software and download it to their smartphone. The full version costs $24. The future may be even more difficult with Microsoft announcing last week that it will launch a new version of Internet Explorer later this year. It not only has a couple Opera-like features, but it supports full Web page browsing and will come with Flash. But more competition in mobile browsing on the phone is good news for mobile content — better experiences drive more usage. Just look at Apple (NSDQ: AAPL), which loves to point out that 71 percent of U.S. mobile browsing is done in Safari.

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