Opera 9.5 – out now!

Opera Software today released to the world the final public release of its flagship Web browser, Opera 9.5. Opera’s cross-device expertise, support for open Web standards and commitment to speed and performance culminate to create the most powerful Opera browser yet. Making its desktop debut in Opera 9.5, Opera Link blurs the boundaries between computers and mobile phones by enabling a seamless Web experience from device to device. Opera 9.5 for Windows, Mac and Linux systems is available free from www.opera.com.

What’s new in Opera 9.5 according to themselves:

Opera Link: Your bookmarks, Speed Dial and even notes taken in the Opera browser can follow you anywhere. Opera Link keeps you synchronized between any Opera 9.5 desktop browser and Opera Mini, Opera’s free browser for your mobile phone.

Find anything: If you can remember a word from a page you’ve read earlier, you can find that page easily with Quick Find. Just enter a word in the address bar to find matching text from any page you have visited.

Looking sharp: Opera makes a move to modernize its look and feel to a sharp new skin with clean lines and clear icons. The ‘New Tab’ button and other elements have been modified to make the switch to a better Web experience more intuitive. Also supports platform-specific skins.

Strengthened defence against malware and phishing: Powered by Haute Secure, Netcraft, and PhishTank, Opera’s Fraud Protection technology automatically blocks offending Web pages to keep you out of harm’s way.

Speed: Opera continues to lead in performance. Opera 9.5 makes dramatic speed improvements to the e-mail client, RSS feeds and the browser itself, so you can spend more time getting things done online.

“Opera 9.5 represents the culmination of two years spent listening to our community and transforming our browser to add features and capabilities they have requested,” said Jon von Tetzchner, CEO, Opera. “Opera 9.5 offers new possibilities and capabilities. It’s faster, lighter and pushes us further out in front of other browsers, by blending the mobile and desktop worlds together in new and powerful ways. We invite everyone to join us as we continue to shape the way the Web will evolve.”

My first impressions according to myself:

The bookmark thing is probably a good thing but I tend to get reminded of important things by my wife, through twitter, news feeds etc. Also the Quick find thing doesn’t seem as fantastic as I’m not comfortable having the browser keeping track of all the pages I’ve visited…

However, my biggest disappointments are design and speed. The browser still uses WAY TOO MUCH space to display the most useful toolbars. Almost twice the space compared to Firefox. Also it appears that rendering fast also means rendering inaccurate. If image size is not set you will have to reload the page several times before it looks “normal”.

Browser security is definitely a good thing, but if you have a decent anti-virus program and firewall it might just be slowing things down. Most threats are directed against IE anyway, so until Opera’s market share grows this doesn’t seem too important.

The most positive news is that it scores 83/100 on the new Acid3 test – congratulations Opera!

Feel free to comment, disagree, argue and share 🙂

More info here, here and here.

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3 Comments on “Opera 9.5 – out now!”

  1. I have used firefox for some years now, and tried this browser out trough this day. And guess what? I am really impressed!!! Looks good, acts great and is full of feaures out of the box. As for now, Opera 9.5 will be my new browser if nothing crazy happens! 🙂
    I can honestly recommend this browser!

  2. Even though I might have sounded a bit negative in my post I must admit I also strongly recommend Opera. I think FF and Opera stands out from the crowd. They’re safer, faster, packed with features and simply better.

    Choosing between them is like choosing between your 2 favourite shirts before going out.
    Happy surfing!

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