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Opera Mini works with BIS

I just learned that Opera Mini was updated a few days ago. No wonder it took me days to be informed, they called it a “silent release”. 😕 Their reason for not making a fuss over it is that it applies to the Palm and Blackberry only.

Two fixes for the Blackberry are mentioned: ability to use Wi-Fi only (also at installation) and BIS. What, BIS? Yes, I installed this new build 4.1.11355 and I could, in fact, use Opera and browse away over a pure BIS-B connection. Frequent BerryReview readers might be aware that I live in Brazil and my carrier, Vivo, does not let me have an APN, which causes a few programs to fail.

So I could finally give Opera Mini a try and see what the enthusiasm is all about. Frankly, I don’t see it. I find the Blackberry browser a lot better than Opera Mini. It’s not that bad, but the Blackberry browser has spoiled me. I missed too many things in Opera Mini that I take for granted in the Blackberry browser and couldn’t find anything about Opera Mini that made me want to have it.

The most notable difference was the rendering. I really think that the Blackberry browser does a much better job. OK, so Opera Mini has that “full desktop” view and zooms in on specific regions of a page more or less like the iPhone, but I detested it. Single column view FTW!

But many people love Opera Mini, and if you never tried it because you’re only allowed to use a BIS connection like me, then this is your chance. Head to or to get your free copy, but note that you need to have Javascript enabled in the Blackberry browser to find it. I always have it disabled and felt like an idiot running in circles unable to find the download link, which only was revealed after I enabled Javascript. Yet another reason for me to dislike Opera Mini…

(Note: the first screenshot is Opera Mini, the second one is the Blackberry native browser.)

8 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. Hey Luciano, I can stay from personal experience that it is always good to have OperaMini as a back-up when the BB Browser can’t load a page not written from mobile use. Opera Mini 4.1 is faster and better than 4.0 was, and I hope this build will be even better.

    I installed it and confirmed the new build number applied on my BB. Don’t get confused if you already have 4.1 and your BB asks you to overwrite 4.1.

  2. bb browser better i agree

  3. I’m with you L. I find it counterintuitive to the “Blackberry norm”. In the couple times I’ve tried it (on both 7100i and 8830) I have yet to find a compelling reason to keep it on my device. I am rarely far enough away from a full pc that I can’t just email myself a link and try problem sites (like EngadgetHD and Crackberry) at a desktop. Plus its complete lack of OS integration means one has to bouce back and forth between 2 browsers. No thanks.

  4. Opera of course have the “Single column view” of the BBBrowser, too. You just have to activate the “mobile view” option in the preferences…. or just press a special shortcut (don’t know which one).

    Bye,………. Hans Wurst

  5. *LOVE* the OperaMini browser- I could just never get a consistent connection through T-Mobile’s APN ( The fact that the new version works with BIS is great. Just tried it, and I got a connection through WiFi and T-Mobile BIS.

    Also eliminates the annoying firewall warning.

  6. I guess I’ve been using OperaMini since Beta 4 came out. On my T-Mobile EDGE connection the BB browser is so slow it is not usable except on mobile web sites. Often pages will hang up after the loading bar almost reaches the end.

    While I agree with most of what the previous posters have said, I still find myself using OperaMini most of the time. I run it in single column view, and even though the formatting is much different than on my desktop, it’s clean, easy to read, and on my connection loads a lot faster than the BB browser.

    Part of the problem may be I have the image quality turned all the way up on both browsers. I like seeing the best quality image, and prefer Opera’s speed at that setting.

    One really annoying thing about Opera; you can’t download their browser using the same program, you have to use BB’s. In fact, downloading other files sometimes requires me to switch between browsers to find one that will work correctly on different sites. Usually the BB browser does the best job of saving large files to the SD card.

    I really hope RIM beefs up the native browser soon, as I’d really prefer using it exclusively.

  7. @Nikolaus, I’ve never been unable to view a site with BBB, except Flash.
    @Hans, I’m aware of the mobile view option. I switched to it after a couple of minutes. I still think it doesn’t render pages very well.
    @Matt, good to hear from someone who likes it. Many people do indeed.
    @Ron, I’ve never had the problems you describe with BBB. Weird.

  8. Hi

    Merits aside, I would be grateful if someone could enlighten me as to HOW to use Opera Mini via BIS-B.

    I have the version quoted above (downloaded 14/6) and can only connect successfully using O2 UK Mobileweb settings, which incur a charge. BIS and wap are included in my data plan. The published O2 wap settings do not work so I am rather hoping to be able to fire Opera up under BIS.

    Any help appreciated.

    Kind regards,


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