Opera Bags Handster to Expand App Stores, Mobile Services

Web browser maker Opera Software announced on Monday the acquisition of Handster Inc., a leading name in the mobile application store market.

Based in Illinois, Handster is known for its wide range of products aimed at the Java, Android, Symbian, Windows Mobile, RIM BlackBerry as well as tablet and netbook applications. In addition to that, the company also enjoys tie-ups with a handful of carriers all across the globe.

Opera, on the other hand, is more famous for its mobile browser products such as the Opera Mini family lineup. The company has recently shifted its focus to offer an app store to capitalise on the ever expanding mobile and smartphone app market.

“Opera is evolving from being a browser company into a fully integrated mobile services company and this acquisition is an important step in that direction. We are delighted to welcome the Handster team into the Opera family,” said Lars Boilesen, CEO, Opera Software, in a statement, IntoMobile reports.

“Handster will enable us to strengthen our mobile store offerings to consumers, mobile operators and handset manufacturers,” he added.

Now what remains to be seen is whether or not this new move by Opera manages to alter the status-quo of the mobile app store market, currently dominated by sites such as GetJar.