Even though we haven’t seen the version 9.0 released — guess that was an internal product version — Opera Software today unveiled the Opera Mobile 9.5. According to the mobile web browser developer, users can expect faster browsing speed, new interface, and built in Opera Widgets. In addition, the new version also packs such features as tabbed browsing (very cool), call phone number from a web page (wow), password manager, URL input auto-completion, history, copy text, save web page for future offline access, and more…
Want it? Sure you do, but at the moment Opera Software is primarily focusing on mobile phone makers like Motorola, HTC, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and others — which will hopefully bundle the new version of Opera in their future handsets, and we hope update their existing products with the improved browser…
Video of Opera Mobile 9.5 guided tour along with the official press release follows after the jump.
PRESS RELEASE – Opera Software, the only company that puts the Web on any device, today announced the commercial release of Opera Mobile 9.5 – the latest version of its award-winning Web browser for sophisticated feature phones and smartphones. Participants at the Mobile World Congress 2008 will be the first to experience the improved functionality of Opera Mobile 9.5.
According to high-tech market research firm, In-Stat, the smartphone market will grow at more than a 30% compound annual growth rate for the next five years globally, exceeding unit sales for laptops, as users experience significant value from their smartphones. Users are downloading more applications and generating higher usage as measured by average revenue per user (ARPU) for operators. The main driver that has fueled this growth is overall user experience on the mobile Web.
Built on Opera’s unique core architecture, the Opera Mobile 9.5 desktop-like browsing experience has been enhanced with innovations such as zooming and panning that make it easier to navigate, load pages quicker and get users closer to the Web content and entertainment they want. With Opera Mobile 9.5, users can experience the real Web and interact with content exactly as they do on their PC.
Opera Mobile 9.5 includes numerous features aimed at elevating the mobile browsing experience. Not only is the user interface (UI) intuitive enough to master in minutes, Opera Mobile 9.5 introduces several new innovations that elevate the Internet experience on a handheld device. Users can take advantage of the intuitive Opera ZoomT to dive into the page and get closer to the content they want. In addition, productivity tools like the ability to save pages for offline browsing, Web address auto complete and password manager help busy users make the most of their time.
Web 2.0-enabled, Widget-ready and Flash support turn Opera Mobile 9.5 into a fully loaded browser allowing users to access all their favorite Web sites such as Facebook, MySpace and more. With Opera Mobile 9.5, OEMs and operators will have the capability to include Flash Lite 3, empowering their smartphone users with access to the full Web including the ability to watch videos on YouTube effortlessly. In addition, Opera Widgets, which are mini applications that allow content to be accessed easily from the device idle screen with just a few clicks, are included in the new edition – automatically engaging the user through ease of operation and meeting consumer demands for quick access to information.
New revenue sources, bigger brand
Opera Mobile 9.5’s ability to serve Web content directly on the idle screen gets mobile OEMs or operators closer to users. By greatly reducing the number of clicks required to get to content, there is a real potential for operators to increase data revenue and user loyalty. In addition, access to the idle screen allows operators to place their brand strategically to interact dynamically with users. Opera Mobile 9.5 is everything that handset makers and operators have been trying to achieve for years.
“Opera Mobile is the result of Opera’s unwavering commitment to a vision that puts a true Web experience in the hands of mobile users,” said Jon von Tetzchner, CEO, Opera Software. “The improved functionality of Opera Mobile 9.5 and easy access to information has raised the bar on a more compelling mobile Web browsing experience and will further stimulate mobile Internet adoption. ”
The Opera Mobile 9.5 experience includes many of the innovations found in Opera’s trend-setting desktop browser including:
- Intuitive user interface
- Tabbed browsing
- Improved text wrap
- Page overview, zooming and panning
- Landscape mode
- Save Web page for future offline access
- Call phone number from Web page
- Send link as SMS/MMS
- Send image as SMS/MMS
- Small Screen Rendering
- Password manager
- Web-address input auto-completion
- History and bookmarks
- Copy text
- Opera Widgets
Opera Mobile is currently shipped on more than 100 million phones with many of the world’s top mobile OEMs and operators such as HTC, Motorola, Nokia, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, T-Mobile, and others.
Leading software platform provider, UIQ, has realized the potential of Opera’s new mobile browser. “UIQ works with the world’s leading mobile phone manufacturers to create the ultimate user experience. Our long-standing partnership with Opera has given users the ability to access all their favorite Web sites and services,” says Mats Barvesten, EVP Product Planning and Product Management at UIQ Technology. “We look forward to introducing our upcoming handsets, featuring the groundbreaking Opera Mobile 9.5 browser.”
Along with hands-on exposure to Opera Mobile 9.5, Mobile World Congress participants will also have the ability to experience Opera on a variety of devices: Opera Mobile on smartphones, free downloads of Opera Mini 4, improved Web browsing on gaming consoles and the ARCHOS Generation 5 Media players will be just a few of the exciting features of Opera’s 2008 exhibit.
Mobile World Congress will be held on the 11th through the 14th of February in 2008 in Barcelona, Spain. Visit the Opera Booth in Hall 2, 2C76 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to book a meeting.
Platform Support and Availability
Opera Mobile 9.5 will be available on all major platforms including Symbian, Windows Mobile and Linux, as both a standalone browser and as a SDK. The public beta release of Opera Mobile 9.5 will be announced separately.