Opera Mini 5 for iPhone: screenshots
Opera Mini 5 for iPhone, a 'proxy browser' that compresses web pages on Opera's servers before sending them to the handset, launched on the App Store for free on Tuesday. The software was sent to Apple for certification in March.
The browser opens on a default start page, dubbed Speed Dial, which has nine customisable tabs for easy access to favourite sites. A pair of arrows on the bottom bar lets you scroll easily from the active web page back to the home screen.
Tabs are easily managed with another button on the bottom bar — like Safari, the application remembers tabs after closing and reopening the application. On O2's 3G network in our London office, Opera Mini loaded the ZDNet UK homepage in just over 10 seconds compared to 26s for Safari. We saw a similar trend when loading up the BBC News website: 6s to fully load on Opera Mini, 27s on Safari.
Holding your finger over an image or a block of text brings up the context menu, which lets you open new links, save pictures to the iPhone's photo roll and copy blocks of text to the clipboard. Unlike Safari, however, the text selection tool does not allow you to modify the boundaries of the selected text.
The Tools button brings up a standard set of web browser features, including quick access to bookmarks and a Find feature.
The Settings menu lets you change text size and image quality, and includes support for Opera Link, a tool to synchronise bookmarks, Speed Dials and search engines across different phones and versions of Opera.