Opera Software has announced that a major new beta release of the Opera Mini Browser will be launched next Tuesday, June 19th. The new version, code named Dimension, is said to have been rewritten from the ground up and to incorporate at least one revolutionary new feature. You can sign up for the beta at www.operamini.com/beta.
Opera Mini is already revolutionary. It has completely transformed the mobile browsing experience particularly on mainstream phones and slow networks. Using nothing more than a Boost Mobile prepaid phone and Opera Mini I browse virtually any site on the web. Huge pages complete with all images load quickly and look great thanks to Mini’s compression and its small screen rendering technology.
There’s a contest at my.opera.com/operamini/blog/opera-mini-beta-contest to guess what the major new feature of Mini will be. I can think of a lot of things that would revolutionize my mobile browsing like off-line browsing, page zooming ala the iPhone or synchronizing which RSS feed items I’ve read with a desktop application. But none of those are truly revolutionary as other mobile browsers already do the first two and web-based newsreaders like Bloglines keep feeds in sync. Page zooming does involve a dimension change though.
The contest page has some cryptic clues – three photos of a phones each with a different object attached. The objects? An iPod, SLR camera lens and Nintendo Wii controller. Seems to be implying that Dimension will have something to do with media and gaming.
If you haven’t tried Opera Mini yet, don’t wait until the 19th to get started, point your phones browser at operamini.com and download the current version.
If you watched the Steve Jobs presentation at WWDC, he showed a new feature that highlights individual parts of a web page, then it pulls that part into a local “live” widget with one mouse click.
My guess is “dimension” will somehow highlight a piece of a web page and let you snap it as an instant RSS feed or localize it for offline viewing.