Major Update to Opera Mini
Opera comes in two main flavors for Android: Opera browser and Opera Mini. The latter is a great choice for users with slow connections or limited bandwidth, as it greatly compresses data (more aggressively than Opera browser’s Turbo mode). You can easily save up to 90% of your bandwidth without any major differences for most websites.
Opera Mini basically works by having Opera’s server act as a proxy between you and the websites you’re visiting. It then strips out information that isn’t crucial, such as some custom styles or web fonts. Additionally, images are compressed to further reduce necessary bandwidth. This works great for reading articles, for example, but may break parts of more interactive websites or even render them completely unusable (Opera browser’s Turbo mode is less aggressive, which results in less breakage at the expense of more required data).
The latest version of Opera Mini brings several improvements, especially to the old interface that’s been around since the Gingerbread era:
- Improved user interface and design: the old interface has been revamped by making it flatter and more consistent with material design. It borrows many elements from the Opera browser app as well:
- You can now use swipe gestures for several actions such as cancelling downloads or closing tabs.
- New data counter shows your daily progress on saving.
- The start page has been merged with speed dial and a new “discover” section.
- Support for high resolutions.
- Private browsing is now supported — you can open private tabs from the overflow menu.
- The omnibar now offers URLs from your history and bookmarks, as well as search suggestions.
- A revamped bookmark manager, which allows you to sync your bookmarks between your devices.
You can grab the latest version of Opera Mini from the Google Play Store. Note that this is a new package compatible with Android 2.3+, so you’ll need to install it separately from the old one. The old version, Opera Mini Mobile, is still available on the Play store and is compatible with Android 1.5+.