I played a bit more with Opera Mini Beta 4 on a Windows Mobile 5 Pocket PC. Of course, it took a little bit of work since Java always gets confused about the status of the network connection. I had to go into WM’s memory manager and terminate the Java midlet manager, restart it, and launch Opera to get it to work (faster than a soft reset). I headed over to this website which correctly ID-ed it as a mobile device and through me into the mobile friendly viewing mode. Fortunately, the plug-in has an option go to the full site view. I couldn’t get the spiffy feature described by Opera to provide an experience similar to the iPhone’s full page view with the option to zoom to a section of the page. However, the default view was pretty good. In fact, it is so much better and seems to render so much faster than Pocket Internet Explorer (AKA IE Mobile), you have to wonder what is going on at Microsoft that they couldn’t have solved this problem long ago.
If Java didn’t make Opera Mini so annoying to start up, I’d definitely use it more often. As it is, I need to make sure I have a couple of minutes to terminate the midlet manager and go through hoops to get it running (or a soft reset). That is not a lot of fun.