Recently, RIM acquired Torch Mobile in a move that made their plans to update the native BlackBerry Browser public. This is leaving BlackBerry users wondering how third party browsers such as Opera, will compete.
Dennis Bournique of WAPReview has some great insight into this acquisition and what it means for Opera. While it is great that BlackBerry will be updating their browser, there is always room for improvement and this is where third party browsers such as Opera Mini will always be complementary to the BlackBerry platform.
First of all, Opera has consistently built what I consider to be better mobile browsers than any of the Webkit implementations. For example, I have never seen a Webkit based mobile browser where the cache worked properly, pressing the “Back” button always seems to reload the page, wasting time and network resources. The Webkit based browsers I have used also generally did not have a fit to width option and dedicated page up and page down keys, features that are standard on Opera browsers and are critical to browsing effectively on mobile. Opera mobile browsers also tend to be faster than Webkit based ones. Opera Turbo, which combines the speed of server assisted browsing with the security of the end to end encryption provided by direct browsing, will raise the bar even higher. I expect that Opera will continue to offer better alternative browsers on all platforms and by doing so will be able to monetize the various Opera products effectively with sales and search engine deals.