Opera has launched an updated version of the Opera Mini web browser for Google Android. Opera Mini 5 beta has all the hallmarks of Opera Mini on other platforms, including:
- Speed Dial: A start page with quick access to 9 of your bookmarked pages
- Data compression: Opera’s servers actually compress each page before it’s sent to you, making page loads much faster on slow devices
- Opera Link: You can synchronize your bookmarks with the desktop version of Opera’s web browser
Opera Mini 5 beta also has a password manager and decent bookmark and history views.
Probably my favorite feature is the way that Opera handles tabbed browsing. Just hit the tab button in the toolbar at the bottom of the screen and Opera will bring up thumbnails of all your open windows. You can hit the plus bar to open a new tab, or hit the X over any icon to close a tab. It’s much more intuitive than the way that the default Google Android browser handles tabs, and it takes up less screen real estate than the always-visible tab bar on the Dolphin web browser for Android.
There’s no support for multitouch, which means you can’t pinch to zoom. But zooming, scrolling, and other actions are very fast and smooth using single-touch gestures.
The launch of Opera Mini 5 beta for Android comes just a week after the launch of Opera Mini 5 beta for Windows Mobile.
You can download Opera Mini 5 beta for Android from Opera.com, or from the Android Market.
You can check out my hands-on video with Opera Mini 5 beta for Android after the break.