Opera to launch WebKit-based Ice browser for Android and iOS in February

Daniel Bader

January 18, 2013 8:33pm

Opera will be announcing a new WebKit-based browser for smartphones and tablets during Mobile World Congress in February. According to a preview obtained by Pocket-lint, the company plans to do away with many of space-wasting icons and boxes, opting instead for gestures and big, beautiful icons.


The company will launch Opera Ice for Android and iOS, and it will be optimized for tablets as well as smartphones. It appears that the new version will take over from the traditional Opera Mobile as the company’s flagship mobile browser, but it will still offer its bandwidth-saving Opera Mini browser for legacy smartphone users.

The app focuses on gestures to navigate between pages and to access the home screen, which resembles an iOS or Android screen with bookmarks that mimic native applications. Opera means to utilize WebKit to ensure ultimate standards compliance, and to allow HTML5-based web applications the most space to run. The company is betting on HTML5 as a cross-platform development unifier and WebKit, as we saw recently with Microsoft’s mobile IE10 woes, is the only true player in the space at the moment.

The company also stated that it may bring a Windows Phone version to market, but it first wants to evaluate whether there is enough demand for such a product.

Look for Opera Ice to debut during Mobile World Congress next month in Barcelona.

Source: Pocket-lint

  • Nathaniel James

    This looks promising. Google Chrome has been giving me issues lately 🙁

  • Comment Master

    Opera is doing a good job by trying to be best in its field… unlike Mozilla trying to build their own OS :/

  • EvanK

    I personally use Opera on my desktop and laptop, but IMO as of right now their Android application has recently been bested by some of its competitors, namely browsers like Dolphin. I’d love to see how they can improve upon their mobile solutions.

  • MattyMattMatt

    I like the gestures, but I dont like webkit 🙁

  • Bill Murray

    Best, mobile OS. Fastest, simplest, most ergonomicall.

  • Henaway

    This actually looks and acts different. Even if I don’t see myself ditching chrome for it, I love seeing new ideas at work. Will have to give it a whirl when it’s released.

  • Jeremy

    WebKit isn’t the standard. HTML5 is the standard. Multiple implementations of a standard is a good (and necessary!) thing.