Chromium-based Opera browser now available on Windows, Mac

By on May 28, 2013, 1:30 PM

It’s been over three months since Opera announced it was dropping its own Presto web rendering engine in favor of Webkit, the same used by Apple's Safari and Google's Chrome. Although an Android version has been around since March, today the company is finally announcing a brand new release for Windows and Mac desktops. Dubbed Opera Next, the browser was reportedly built from scratch based on Chromium 28.

Download: Opera Next 15.0

This particular version of Chromium is already running Google’s fork of WebKit, which means Opera Next is powered by the new rendering engine as well. The company noted that while the software is very stable, it’s being released as beta software, and says we can expect rapid updates in the weeks to come.

The first change you’ll notice with Opera Next is a simplified UI. The address and search bar are combined into one, while bookmarks are merged into the Speed Dial function with the ability to group multiple items into a folder -- a design change that first appeared on the Android version.

Also borrowed from its mobile counterpart is the new Discover tab that displays curated content from popular news sources. Meanwhile, Stash lets users save pages for later, but unlike Instapaper or Pocket it doesn’t seem to be geared for reading by stripping most visual content. Instead Opera only says it will record the location, meta data, and a screenshot of a page, then place this information into a collapsable list entry on the browser's Start Page. Your Stash can be searched by keyword and/or scanned visually by screenshot.

Other notable features include off-road mode -- a proxy-browser mode that uses server caching to save bandwidth -- private browsing, pop-up blocking, and Opera Link for synchronizing settings.

It should be noted that with the move to Chromium and Blink, Opera extensions are no longer supported, and instead only a subset of Chromium extension APIs are available right now. Among them the company mentioned Evernote, Feedly, Disconnect, LastPass, WOT, Ghostery, and cottonTracks.

Although there should be a noticeable an improvement in speed and compatibility, long time fans of the browser will also notice several missing features, like Opera Notes, RSS, and customization options, among others. It’s unclear if the company plans to implement some or all of these features in the final version of Opera.




User Comments: 19

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ReederOnTheRun ReederOnTheRun said:

This actually looks pretty sweet. Fast and simple. Maybe I'll try this out as my backup browser instead of Waterfox.

P. S. - for everyone who likes Firefox, but never heard of Waterfox --> try it out!

ArthurZ ArthurZ said:

Do we need yet another browser, really? Especially if it is Chromium-based?

lipe123 said:

How can you have too many? Would you rather everyone use the one browser to give everyone a virus aka Internet explorer?

Opera is also anything but new, its been around since the days of Netscape navigator and whatnot. This is just a revamped version.

ReederOnTheRun ReederOnTheRun said:

Do we need yet another browser, really? Especially if it is Chromium-based?

In a word: Yes

Guest said:

R.I.P. Opera, indeed. It's been a long time, but everything comes to an end. The folder-like tabs is what killed it for me, really. Well, I should give the new bastard a try, even for the old times sake.

JC713 JC713 said:

Do we need yet another browser, really? Especially if it is Chromium-based?

Wont this replace the original Opera?

Demigod001 said:

They cut out what made opera opera. . I like a book marks bar I found the start page grouping ok but not for the number of bookmarks I have. The page zoom is not as nice and opera 12.15. Lost tab preview and sizing. Its missing the side bar which I use for bookmarks, history and notes quite often.

This is just a re skin of chrome. I'm quite disappointed with it tbh if I want chrome I would use it

yukka, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Have been using opera for a couple of years now. Sad that its become a reskin of google chrome. Looks like ill be heading back to

Firefox.

Guest said:

Hard to believe but Opera 1994-2013 R.I.P. Never forget.

Auth3ntic0 Auth3ntic0 said:

I m testing it right now. It s actually quite decent and smooth.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

There nothing left from opera, it's another chrome, all features are gone, starting with tabs and speed dialing and ending with useless settings, not mentioning customizable buttons and page editing. I hope its beta disadvantage or else- fare well my friend, fare well. R.I.P. OPERA

1 person liked this | bobcat bobcat, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Murphy's Laws:

  • Any running program is obsolete.
  • Any useful program will have to be changed.

So, just when they finally got Opera almost perfect and we've come to depend on it as our exclusive browser, they're scrapping it for another browser we chose not to use. I don't suppose it ever occurred to them that if we wanted Chrome, we wouldn't be using Opera.

I stopped reading the "improvements" early on, since it only took a few to render what we knew as Opera useless.

Well, goodbye and good luck to them, and if Google doesn't take over their company, its browser will soon eat up theirs. But who will care? Not the Opera users, they'd be all gone.

R.I.P. Opera!

Railman said:

Seems to be a trend programs losing features.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

Seriously?? Is it a Webkit limitation that you can't have temporary download location? It's 2013!! I don't want to download every single file to a known directory!!

I agree with above posters - RIP Opera, it's a Chrome reskin.

I seriously hate humanity for this. Chrome and other things aren't so great, but everyone is using them and adding popularity...

1 person liked this | captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

....[ ].....I seriously hate humanity for this. ...[ ].....
I hate all of humanity too Stickman, but for all the right reasons....

Railman said:

The answer is not to update!

SNGX1275 SNGX1275, TS Forces Special, said:

One of the features of Opera that I have found very useful a few times is the ability to change where temporary files are stored/downloaded to. I like to put this on a different physical hard drive from the program and my OS, I've also used this on a work computer where the login was networked rather than local. A few months ago I got Chrome on Win 8 and needed to change the temp internet files location to a different drive and couldn't do it. As far as I can tell this is impossible to do in Chrome, and thus, probably all webkit based browsers.

I'll likely get the new version of Opera, but not until it is out of beta.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

Yeah, I can't stand not having that feature. I save 'junk' to the temp location, most of my other stuff to the Downloads library (which I organise every so often), and other specific stuff gets saved directly to the specific location. This way I have no rubbish I need to clear out, it's just a simple Opera>Clean command.

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