Kontra’s Case Against Opera Mini on the iPhone


It’s one thing for an app on the iPhone to query the web, talk to its own or others’ servers, but something entirely different for Opera Mini to proxy the entire web through its own proprietary servers. Yes, you read it right. Opera gets in between you and every single URL out there, from your bank to your school to your doctor’s office. You never communicate with any site directly, only through Opera proxy servers that first go to that URL, get a page, recompile it into its own markup language, compress and send it back to the mobile client that alone can understand it.

Here’s the pertinent entry from Opera’s FAQ:

Q: Is there any end-to-end security between my handset and — for example — paypal.com or my bank?

A: No. If you need full end-to-end encryption, you should use a full Web browser such as Opera Mobile.

I think it’d be better if Opera Mini simply refused to handle HTTPS requests on its own.

Monday, 1 March 2010