Feeds

Vodafone takes Opera to the masses

Even poor people want mobile internet

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Vodafone has been working with Opera to customise Opera Mini for use on its networks in the developing world, pushing the mobile internet to those unfamiliar with the fixed alternative.

The project will roll out in India, South Africa, Turkey, Tanzania and Egypt, and involves providing the Java-based Opera Mini along with customised home pages in local languages. The plan is to to walk the user through a browsing experience which may be their first exposure to the worldwide network the rest of us increasingly take for granted.

"With this product, we can transform even basic handsets into very capable internet browsing devices, enabling millions of people to enjoy the social and economic aspects of the internet" says the canned statement from Vodafone's Head of Emerging Markets, painting the move as a benefit to humanity rather than of any particular commercial interest.

Vodafone is making much of Opera Mini's ability to compress pages on a server before delivery, though that's hardly something new to this project. Opera launched "Opera Turbo" about a year ago and it does indeed speed up browsing, though for many people the web doesn't need to be instantaneous - Apple's iPhone wasn't 3G at launch, and still did OK.

But Vodafone is aiming this service at much lower-end handsets. With Opera's help, and a load of online guidance, the company hopes to transform millions of voice and text customers into consumers of mobile data.

Many communities have been revolutionised by the arrival of voice telephony, and it's possible to imagine that mobile data will have a similar impact, if Vodafone can make a few quid out of it then that's no bad thing though we do wonder how Opera's advertising-based revenue model will fare. ®

Business security measures using SSL

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Blockbuster book lays out the first 20 years of the Smartphone Wars
Symbian's David Wood bares all. Not for the faint hearted
Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets
... into submission. Weve squeals, ditches payment plans
This flashlight app requires: Your contacts list, identity, access to your camera...
Who us, dodgy? Vast majority of mobile apps fail privacy test
Apple Watch will CONQUER smartwatch world – analysts
After Applelocalypse, other wristputers will get stuck in
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.