Opera Software has revealed its next generation browser, and you know we wouldn’t be talking about it here on Android Community if it didn’t have something to do with mobile devices. Introduced today over on Pocket-Lint, Opera Ice is a new mobile browser targeted at iOS and Android. Opera has seen the need for change in the mobile browser space, and plans to use Ice as a means of implementing that change.
For starters, one one of the most noteworthy features about the Webkit-based browser is that it does away with buttons, for the most part at least. Instead of pressing back and forward buttons to navigate web pages, users will instead have gesture controls at their disposal. We’ve seen gesture controls implemented partially in some other mobile browsers, but Opera wants to take it all the way with Ice.
So, how are you going to get to your favorite websites? Just like your smartphone and tablet, Ice will have something of a home screen, where icons that lead to “apps” (websites) are gathered. Clicking on one of the icons takes you that website, or that website’s app, if it has one compatible with Ice. Search is also getting a tune up in Ice, with Opera gathering a bunch of different engines in one place so that when you search for a term, you can see what kind of information you’re getting across a bunch of different services like Google, Bing, and Wikipedia.
By tapping a little icon that appears at the bottom of the screen when you’re viewing a webpage, you’ll be taken back to the home screen. The web page you were viewing will turn into an icon that you can then touch to resume viewing or drag to add to your collection of web page icons. It seems very intuitive in the video above, which was recorded by Opera CEO Lars Boilesen as he gave a demonstration to other employees during a meeting that took place shortly before Christmas.
There will be a desktop version of Ice launching in March, but for now, all sights are set on the February launch of the mobile version. Opera will have it on-hand at MWC 2013 in Barcelona, which just so happens to be an event that Android Community is attending. Therefore, expect to be hearing more about the mobile experience Opera Ice brings to the table before long.