Before switching to FireFox a year or so ago, I used Opera for years. It was so much faster and practical than anything else out at the time, especially when you are working on the backend of websites all day long.
The current stable release is 9.64 although you can download a preview version of Opera 10, their fourthcoming browser which has ‘Opera Turbo'.
I admit I don't know how the technology works but according to them :
That’s why we’ve been working on Opera Turbo, a server-side optimization and compression technology that provides significant improvements in browsing speeds over limited-bandwidth connections by compressing network traffic. This does not only make you surf faster, but also lowers the cost of browsing when you are on a pay per usage plan.
I installed it today and it does seem a little faster than FireFox and Chrome, although there is a chance that I only believe this because I installed it right after reading about how quick it was….the power of suggestion!!!
I recommend downloading and trying it out :)