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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

‘Opera to increase presence in Nigeria’

Web Evangelist, Opera Software, Mr. Zi Bin Cheah has revealed that the company plans to increase its presence in Nigeria, reports CHARLES OKOH.

He said apart from ranking as the second highest user of Opera Mini in Africa and eighth globally, the nation is a market to watch.

Cheah who was speaking recently in Lagos, said African region is an important and growing market for Opera Software.

He also said in the year up to December 2010, Opera Mini page views in the top 10 countries of Africa increased by 365 per cent, unique users increased by 176 per cent and data transferred increased by 331 per cent.

“So it will continue to be a focus. We are also looking at ways to increase our presence in Nigeria. Nigeria is the second highest user of Opera Mini in Africa and 8th globally and certainly a country to watch,” he said

Cheah said the Opera Mini, which is a browser on the mobile phone has grown on a year to year growth from October, 2009 to October 2010 by more than 200 per cent on number of users, page views and number of data transfer.

He also said apart from helping Nigerians to develop some innovative mobile ideas, they also want to come to Nigeria and understand what is going on in the market.

“Nigeria is one of our top markets so we did a study called state of the mobile web where we captured our markets in different countries with regards to the mobile web. We realized some interesting facts from the reports about Nigerians. We observed that Nigeria has the highest search-related pages amongst our biggest markets. So what it means is that Nigerians, probably, they are the people that like to search the most using our browser that is why more than 35 per cent of the pages Nigerians browse are search-related,” he said.

Cheah said the study also found that both Nigerians and Americans tend to save the most when they use the Opera Mini.

“What I mean by saving cost is that Opera Mini is a browser that does compression. For example, if I go to CNN.com Opera Mini will not download CNN.com directly from CNN.com server. It will go to Opera Mini server, fetch the pages from CNN server and compress it by 80 to 90 per cent. From that perspective the user would save money and data,” he said.

On the relevance of Opera Mini with the coming of broadband in the country, he said Opera Mini would become more popular because it is not just on mobile phone but also on computer, game devices, TV set up boxes, four wheel drive TV screens amongst others.

“We are really the browser on every device. So, when broadband becomes more available we would see more users on more devices and that make us happier and also we believe that as broadband picks up mobile browsing would continue to grow very strongly,” he said,

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