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Opera gives app store a boost with mobile payments

Opera makes mobile browsers Opera Mini and Opera Mobile, through which users access the Opera Mobile Store to download apps. Via the new agreement with Bango, Opera users will now be able to purchase apps, as well as pay for content within apps and place the charges on their carrier bill or charge it to a credit card.

“Allowing the users of the store to pay for the apps they want to download provides certain advantages,” said Anil Malhotra, senior vice president of marketing for Bango, New York.

“It makes the store more attractive for developers because if you can provide a revenue stream to developers, it encourages them to focus on apps for your store,” he said. “They will focus on marketing to your store, which will drive up the quality of apps and this will drive user activity.”

Mobile browsing
The Opera browser ships with the device for many feature phones. One of Opera’s main advantages is that it lets users browse both mobile and Web pages.

The Opera Mobile Store, which was introduced earlier this year, is accessed through a single click from the Opera Mini and Opera Mobile browsers. It is available to more than  100 million Opera users with no downloading and is one of the top 10 app stores.

“One of the key differentiators with Opera is that it is an independent app store provider – it is not tied to a particular device or platform,” Mr. Malhorta said.

Also, because it is browser based, it is easy for developers to add content to the Opera Store App store.

“Whatever the device, the store that appears is provisioned with content just for that device,” Mr. Malhorta said.

“We think this is quite an interesting position because it means you can very easily deliver new content to the store and to new markets without having to update software.”

Final Take
Chantal Tode is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York