My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: Opera Browser for Nokia X Series – Discovery with Opera Turbo is a Speed Dial Away as Opera is Riding West

Friday, June 27, 2014

Opera Browser for Nokia X Series – Discovery with Opera Turbo is a Speed Dial Away as Opera is Riding West

“Our companies have enjoyed a long history together, and this represents a huge step forward for both of the companies. We have worked closely with the Microsoft Devices Group on this project, to make sure the users of Nokia X affordable smartphones can have the best web browsing experience right out of the box”

Opera Chief Executive Lars Boilesen commenting on Microsoft's decision to include Opera as the Default Browser on Nokia X smartphone

Remember the Nokia X range of smartphones?

You’ll be forgiven if you don’t as Nokia markets it solely in India. However, I’d done an article on the smartphone when it had launched on Tuesday February 25th 2014 as described in detail in my blog article entitled “US$120 Nokia X along with US$135 Nokia X+ and US$150 Nokia XL coming by Second Quarter of 2014 - Nokia's Trio of smartphones Perfect Windows Phone Trojan Horse for Developing World”.

It’s an oddball in the Microsoft Family as it’s a smartphone line running a forked version of Android made to look like Windows Phone OS as described in “MICROSOFT CONTINUES ITS ANDROID EXPERIMENT WITH THE NOKIA X2 SMARTPHONE”, published June 24, 2014 By Andy Boxall, DigitalTrends.

Now it’s gonna get another splash of diversity; it’s gonna use the Norwegian Browser Opera as announced in “Opera Browser finds new niche: Nokia's Android powered X family”, published June 24, 2014 10:44 AM PDT by Stephen Shankland, CNET News and “Opera will be the default Browser on the Nokia X phones”, published June 24th 2014, GSMArena.

The news was officially announced on Opera's Blog as Opera News in an article entitled “Opera becomes the new default Browser on Nokia X”. This coincides with Microsoft-Nokia Tag team rolling out yet another member of this oddball team, the US$135 Nokia X2 smartphone.

This was also officially announced on the Microsoft Blog as stated in “Surprise! Microsoft Makes Opera As The Default Browser For Nokia X Family”, published Jun 24, 2014, Microsoft News and on Nokia’s Blog as stated in “NOKIA X2: THE NEXT-GENERATION X”, published TUE, JUN 24  PUBLISHED BY ADAM FRASER, Conversations Nokia.

The Nokia X family now reads as thus:

1.      Nokia X
2.      Nokia X+  
3.      Nokia XL
4.      Nokia X2

The Prices are even more interesting. Too bad this is mostly an Indian and Asian Market phone, as at these prices, it’d do very well in Jamaica. Its main crime is that it’s a Dual-SIM (Subscriber Identification Module) smartphone, which is a no-no for Telecom Providers in the western hemisphere who want their subscribers locked in to one Network. If you want this, you have to order it direct from India yourself as this’ll never be on Telecom Provider Digicel or Telecom Provider LIME’s Networks here in Jamaica.

Opera Browser for Nokia X Series – No Country for Google Chrome as Opera is Riding West

Good to note at this point that SwiftKey, as described in my blog article entitled “SwiftKey now free for Android Users – How Apple users might soon be getting SwiftKey Free” is already baked into all smartphones that are a part of the Nokia X line, including the new Nokia X2. The specs for the Nokia X2 as shown below:

1.      Operating System: Android OS, v4.3 (Jelly Bean)
2.      Processor: Dual-core 1.2 GHz Cortex-A7
3.      Chipset: Qualcomm MSM8210 Snapdragon 200
4.      Screen: 4.3 inches, 480 x 800 pixels (~217 ppi pixel density) IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors
5.      Dimensions: 121.7 x 68.3 x 11.1 mm, 87.4 cc (4.79 x 2.69 x 0.44 in)
6.      Weight: 150 g (5.29 oz)
7.      RAM: 1 GB RAM
8.      External Storage: 32 GB microSD 
9.      Internal Storage: 4 GB
10.  Rear Camera: 5 MP, 2592 х 1944 pixels, autofocus, LED flash
11.  SIM: Dual SIM
12.  Network: GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 - SIM 1 & SIM 2
13.  Cellular Internet: HSDPA 900 / 2100, EDGE, GPRS
14.  Wireless Internet: Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth v4.0 with A2DP, HS
15.  Battery: Li-Ion 1800 mAh battery (BV-5S)
a.       Up to 552 h
b.      Up to 10 h (2G) / Up to 13 h (3G)
c.       Up to 86 h

16.  Features:
a.       Accelerometer, proximity
b.      SMS (threaded view), MMS, Email, Push Email, IM
c.       HTML
d.      Stereo FM radio with RDS
e.       A-GPS support, GLONASS, Beidou
f.       Java MIDP emulator
g.      Glossy green, orange black, yellow, white, matt dark grey
h.      7GB free OneDrive storage
i.        SNS integration
j.        MP3/WAV/eAAC+/Flac player
k.      MP4/H.264/H.263 player
l.        Photo editor
m.    Voice memo/dial
n.      Predictive text input
o.      Stereo FM radio with RDS

The colours are also very stylish for this Dual-SIM deal

1.      Glossy Green
2.      Orange Black
3.      Yellow
4.      White
5.      Matte Dark Grey

Nokia is clearly trying to avoid using Google Chrome’s Browser, as it would mean Ad Revenue coming from their phones going into Google’s pocket. This would defeat the process of using Google Android as cannon fodder in their fight to grow interest in their Windows Phone OS, especially as it’s styled to look like Windows Phone OS.

After all, it you can beat them, you use them to attract users, especially in the Developing World, for which these Nokia X Line of smartphones are being tailor made. Most likely to, the default Search Engine Providers will be Microsoft’s Bing Search Engine, making sure that in terms of Search, Nokia’s got you covered.

Opera Browser Growing Strong – Discovery with Opera Turbo is a Speed Dial Away

So what are the standout features of the Opera Browser? Since the death of Blackberry, Opera has been migrating to Google Android and Apple iOS as a Browsers alternative to Google Android Browser, Google Chrome for Mobile and Safari Browser on Apple iOS devices.

They’ve been seeing a gentle uptick in usage since September of 2013 according to StatCounter as chronicled in my Geezam blog article entitled “Opera Mini Browser continues to be Growing Strong as smartphone Growth marches forward”.

Possible because for a Browser, it’s got some pretty stellar Features, most of which they’ve copied from other Web-based services. There is the Discovery Feature, which is very similar to StumbleUpon in that it curates hundreds of websites around the world and presents it as a creme de la creme Breadbasket of what's good online. This list is sortable by country and topic and it's something I would love over Google, as it means faster searching and guaranteed quality content.

Then there's Opera Turbo, a service that's a lot like the Amazon Silk Browser. It uses Opera's Servers to handle search queries and then compress the Data so that it loads much faster on Opera's Browser. Thanks to this compression routine, it reduces the amount of Data a smartphone has to process and renders WebPages much faster.

Finally there's Speed Dial, possibly the only thing that the Norwegians didn't copy from somewhere else. This is basically a faster Bookmarking scheme that makes it easier for your thumbs to find bookmarked website entries by organizing them in structured folders. Thus, finding them again for uses while browsing on the go is that much easier, especially when you throw in Opera Turbo for faster Browsing of the Website you've been introduced to by Discovery.

Discovery with Opera Turbo is a Speed Dial Away on the Nokia X series of smartphones!

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