Opera debuts mobile app marketplace

best web browsers 2009 reviewed ie8 firefox chrome operaOpera announced today the launch of its new mobile app store, reports CNet. The store is usable by anyone running Java, Symbian, BlackBerry, Android and Windows Mobile operating systems. Apple’s iOS is currently not supported.

The online marketplace now offers over 140,000 mobile applications, including both the free and paid varieties. The apps are organized into a number of categories, including Featured, Free, Top 50, Top Picks, New and Specials.

The store is currently available in 200 countries, the company said. Though the store can be accessed through any browser, it is optimized for use with the Opera Mini or Opera Mobile browsers.

Upon loading the store, which is set as a Speed Dial link in Opera mobile browsers, the operating system is automatically detected, and the appropriate app offerings are displayed.

The Opera app store was built with the help of mobile app marketplace Appia, which provided the store with its e-commerce technology.

“The launch of the Opera Mobile Store supports Opera’s core belief in an open, cross-platform mobile Internet experience by providing Opera users with an integrated storefront of mobile applications,” said Mahi de Silva, executive vice president of Opera Software’s Consumer Mobile unit, in a statement. “Our partnership with Appia delivers to all Opera Mobile and Opera Mini users easy access to a wide variety of great content, on any device, all over the world.”

So why no iOS? Apparently, iPhone support is “not yet live,” but is on its way “very soon,” according to Opera spokesperson Falguni Bhuta, who spoke with PC Mag. “Users when trying to download iOS apps from the Opera Mobile Store will be directed to the iOS App Store to download the app directly from there.”