So over the last few days you may have heard about Opera releasing their latest beta of Opera Mini, version 5 — which of course is different from Opera Mobile.  The former relies on Java and renders on a server (like Skyfire), whereas the latter runs natively on Windows Mobile and runs direct to the web.

It's been 2 years since version 4 came out, so it makes sense for an overhaul. 

There seems to be a hardcore following of Opera Mini out there though, so we just took it for a spin.  Our thoughts?  Yeah, it's pretty darn good.  In fact, you can really feels how Opera is aiming to merge both Mini and Mobile into one — the graphics in Mini look more and more like Mobile and Mobile 9.7 beta is getting Mini's server-based rendering in the guise of "Turbo Mode".

If you already have Java installed, then just hop here to download the Opera Mini 5 update.  Have no idea about any of this stuff but just want to try it? Boxer112 cab'd it up for us, which you can download from your favorite file host  or grab it from ppcgeeks. Just run the .cab and bam, you'll have an Opera Mini 5, Start menu icon and Java installed.  Easy!

See the full press release here on Opera Mini 5