WebKit-based Opera Ice browser heading to iOS

Another new browser is about to make its debut on iOS, but its name is at least partly familiar. Pocket-lint is reporting that Opera Software is planning to launch a new mobile browser called Ice sometime in February that's specifically designed for phones and tablets -- and jettisons the company's engine, Presto, replacing it with the Safari- and Chrome-powering WebKit.

The announcement was made (and software shown) during a closed company meeting last December, but video (below) has surfaced showing it in action. Opera Ice -- which, if you ask us, sounds a bit like a malt liquor-based adult beverage -- is built entirely around gestures, replacing tabs with a grid of site icons and common navigation with swipes. Its main menu has a unified search and URL field front-and-center, while a single menu button is the only bit of user interface visible when actually browsing.

According to Opera, Ice won't be replacing the existing Opera Mini browser, which will continue to be developed. The company is also planning a new desktop browser for launch sometime in March of this year. We'll have more on both when they hit.

[Via Engadget]