Feeds

Vodafone takes Opera to the masses

Even poor people want mobile internet

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

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. ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Mighty Blighty broadbanders beg: Let us lay cable in BT's, er, ducts
Complain to Ofcom that telco has 'effective monopoly'
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE packet loss balls-up
Turning it off and on again fixes glitch 12 HOURS LATER
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
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?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.