Opera’s WebKit-powered browser for Android comes out of beta with full launch

Opera’s WebKit-powered browser for Android comes out of beta with full launch

Opera’s WebKit-powered browser for Android has completed its beta period and is out in full today, the company has announced, with a few additional tweaks.

The much-anticipated beta launch came in March, some two months ago. Now, in addition to the existing features — which include a new user interface and Discover — users of the browser can now choose to place their navigation bar at the top or bottom of the screen. Text wrap and full screen modes for active tabs have also been added, as well improved stability.

The browser was one of the highlights of Mobile World Congress in February, where it was unveiled off the back of the Norwegian firm’s decision to ditch its Presto engine in favor of the open source WebKit. That explains the speed gains that users of the new browser will enjoy on their device.


The browser runs native Web apps, but the headline feature is Discover, which recommends content for users — encouraging a “lean-back surfing experience”, as CEO Lars Boilesen puts it — based on a range of factors that include previous clicks, Web page history and their location. On the downside, Discover content is curated by Opera itself and is not automated.

The Off-Road setting utilises Opera’s network optimization expertise to lower the amount of traffic used per session, and get the most out of slow and unreliable connections. That’s particularly handy in emerging markets, where Opera has a particularly sizeable presence.

Other features — while regular on rival browsers — that mark a change for Opera include private browsing and a unified URL-search bar.

If you still don’t have it yet, you can find the browser on the Google Play Store or m.opera.com.

From Mobile World Congress: Opera CEO Lars Boilesen talks acquisition rumors, plans and Firefox OS [Video]

Image via Opera

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