Opera’s new WebKit-based Android browser has graduated from “beta” status to take over its predecessor in the same slot. Now just known as Opera browser, the new version bares more than a passing resemblance to Chrome for Android.
Though the app is fast and smooth, offering users with modern devices a desktop-like experience, Opera may most benefit users with limited-speed mobile connections or data caps. The new Off-Road feature is quite impressive, using a server-side proxy to compress data, much like the more compact Opera mini. The difference here is that you’ll still be able to load photos and videos, they’ll just be of imperceptibly lower quality than over an uncompressed connection.
There are also a number of new features on board, including a localized Discover pane that shows news from your area in an uncluttered interface. Of course, you still have Opera’s famous Speed Dial home screen, and its Link capabilities synchronizes Speed Dial and bookmarks between devices. The main issue here is that, while Opera is quite popular on mobile, it still holds less than 1% of the desktop market, undermining Link’s usefulness.
Still, Opera is a fantastic alternative to Firefox and Chrome on Android, and deserves to be considered.
Download Opera for Android.