Opera Mini for iPhone

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CNET Editors' Rating 4.0 stars

Excellent

Average User Rating stars

out of 25 user reviews

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  • 2.0 stars

    "Pros don't outweigh the cons"

    April 17, 2010  |   By lostatredrock

    Pros

    The tab interface is nice as is the bookmark dialer, competition is a good thing, theoretically faster in EDGE

    Cons

    Rendering is inconsistent, no full javascript support, poor quality text, no multitouch

    Summary

    I live and work in the city and we have good 3G coverage pretty much every where I go with 3G I just do not notice any speed improvement using Opera vs Safari so that plus is really a non-factor for me. So, Opera would need to win out over Safari in terms of pure features to become my browser of choice and it simply doesn't foot the bill. There are some nice things I would love to see get pulled into Safari, the tab interface is much nicer than what is used by Safari and comes much closer to replicating the tab experience on a full blown browser. The dialer is also a nice feature the only real comparison in Safari would be bookmarks sent to the home screen. That being said Opera trips up when it comes to the job of actually rendering pages which is after all what the thing is for. It handles mobile formatted pages fine, but any page designed for a full browser looses some functionality. The loss of pinch and zoom especially is huge as you loose the fine grain control over zoom you get in Safari. Once you add in the poor text rendering I guess the pinch and zoom exclusion doesn't matter so much since the rendering of text is so poor you can only really read it on pretty high zoom levels anyway so the tap and zoom close ends up being the "best" option. The lack of javascript also hurts though I guess Apple and their licensing share some of the blame for this one (do other versions of mobile opera support javascript?).

    So final thoughts not a horrible first try, but too many areas were Safari comes out on top, if I lived in an area with poor 3G coverage the scales might tip in a different direction, but for me it is just not good enough.

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