Opera Mini is popular. Very popular. Infact it is the preferred web browser for most people visiting techweez.com. Why? Opera mini gets what the users want: to access the web while not throttling their data plans. In emerging smartphone markets, internet costs are prohibitively high and one always has to be on the lookout for anything on their devices that is using more bandwidth. Hence the need for Opera Mini. There are other light weight browsers like UC that are also popular but none enjoys the brand visibility of Opera’s offering. This is because for most people in emerging smartphone markets, Opera Mini was the go-to browser on the feature phones they were using not long ago.
The only problem with Opera Mini has however been how it overdoes things. In its quest to deliver the web to users on slow mobile networks or the data-conscious, it overcompresses web pages. Several key elements that are key and central to the web experience are cut out as a result. That alone has been the reason I have always shunned the browser. Opera knows this and they want to make it right.
Opera is launching what it calls “high compression” mode on Opera Mini that will strike a balance between making sure you don’t overrun your internet bill or blow way past your set daily/weekly/monthly data caps while still delivering a web experience to remember. What Opera Mini users have always known is now known as “extreme compression” and users can go back to it if they desire.
I have used the new version of Opera that has the new high compression mode and I was honestly blown away. It’s pleasant for just about any site. For those asking, Disqus comments finally load on Opera Mini. Finally. Only on high compression mode though. It’s business as usual when you switch to extreme mode. For the first time ever, I found Opera Mini usable and I’ll actually be playing around with it a bit more while my Chrome takes a rest.
The update can be found on the Google Play Store.