Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 25th May 2012 19:09 UTC
Opera Software Pocket-lint has a rumour up that Facebook is interested in acquiring Opera to kickstart their own move into the browser market, to compete with Mozilla, Google, and Microsoft. While it would mean much-deserved recognition for Opera, I actually hope such a deal does not go through - for entirely selfish reasons.
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What would happen to Opera Mini?
by Morgan on Fri 25th May 2012 19:27 UTC
Morgan
Member since:
2005-06-29

Opera Mobile/Mini is the only alternative to Pocket IE I have on the ancient WinCE based barcode scanners I'm responsible for maintaining at my part time job. If Facebook buys Opera, and does away with the gateway that allows the mobile apps to function, our company will have to spend several thousand dollars for new hardware to maintain compatibility with the database we use. That's money that is not in the budget, and while it ensures job security for me, it's not an ideal situation by far.

Please understand that I'm not saying Facebook should drop interest because of its potential impact on one little online sales company, I'm simply offering an anecdote about the impact such decisions have at this level. In fact, I'd love for my company to be able to upgrade us to the latest hardware; it would certainly make my job easier in the long run. I just find it sad that a corporate buyout by a company that has nothing to do with our business could affect us so greatly. But, that's the way the business world works every day.

Reply Score: 2

foldingstock Member since:
2008-10-30

I just find it sad that a corporate buyout by a company that has nothing to do with our business could affect us so greatly. But, that's the way the business world works every day.


I don't mean for this to sound rude, but the "sad" outcome you speak of is always a possibility when you depend on any external entity to conduct business. Free services such as Opera's mobile browser are great, but should be used with caution and some kind of contingency plan in place. Personally, I expect to see a lot more of this in a few years.

Companies are increasingly pushing internal services to "the cloud" to free up their staff and save operational costs. This is great short term, but most companies aren't prepared for the possibility that their cloud service will shut down one day. Services don't even have to shut down to drastically effect business operations. Simply changing a public API or web interface layout could result in broken functionality. Ah, the cloud.

Reply Parent Score: 6

Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Not rude at all, I agree with you completely. I knew what I had thrown together was a kludge, and would eventually be replaced with a more robust answer. In fact, I do have a long term solution mapped out via OpenBravo's ERP offering. But it will still involve a significant hardware upgrade, something my superiors will just have to deal with when the time comes.

My point was more that, increasingly, big decisions by the major players no longer trickle downhill to the little guys. Rather, they become an avalanche of change that is difficult to deal with unless, as you said, there is a contingency plan. I have a feeling that even if we had licensed a specific level of support and customization from Opera for our warehouse database project, a move like the one rumored would still impact it significantly.

Reply Parent Score: 3

pgquiles Member since:
2006-07-16

There are alternatives: NetFront, ZetaKey, UC Browser, Konqueror Embedded, and probably more.

Reply Parent Score: 3

Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Actually I have tried a few alternatives, including NetFront, and none will work on the very specific hardware we have. I'm exploring other hardware solutions at this point, but so far it looks like a complete upgrade to WinMo6 based scanners, unless I can find an Android based alternative that is as rugged as what we use now (DataLogic Kyman scanners).

Reply Parent Score: 2

zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Opera Mobile/Mini [...] the gateway that allows the mobile apps to function

But Opera Mobile doesn't depend on Opera servers. Sure, it can use them - say, for compression on a slow connection, just like desktop Opera Turbo function - but it doesn't require their presence, it's a full browser.

(anyway, I doubt any buyout; if there's something behind rumors, I suspect just more of how Opera ASA does business in... mobile)

Reply Parent Score: 2

PresentIt Member since:
2010-02-10

(anyway, I doubt any buyout; if there's something behind rumors, I suspect just more of how Opera ASA does business in... mobile)

Um, what do you mean?

Reply Parent Score: 1

daedalus Member since:
2011-01-14

True, Opera Mobile is a fully fledged browser. Opera *Mini* on the other hand depends entirely on the servers. The differences between Opera Mobile and Opera Mini are hard to see (similar interface, icon etc.) but they are totally different apps.

Reply Parent Score: 1