IF you get FOMO from being away from Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp, Opera’s new update will please you very much.
Opera yesterday introduced a new browser that integrates messaging apps to its sidebar. Codenamed Reborn, the browser lets you chat with friends through Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Telegram on a side window while you work on the main browser. Other apps such as Viber and WeChat are not yet included in the support, although the company tells CNET it is working to make them available soon.
It’s time to rethink the browser
Social messengers completely changed our lives, by allowing us to work, discover new things and communicate at the same time. This shift has come with smartphones, but desktops and laptops, while theoretically more powerful multitasking tools, have been left behind.
Browsing and chatting simultaneously is cumbersome and inefficient now, as you need to switch between tabs when responding to a message. We believe this needs to change. That’s why we bring you Opera Reborn, the first browser to allow messengers to reside within your browser, without the need to install any extensions or apps.
From Neon to Reborn
Opera Neon, released in January, is an experimental browser that envisions the future of web browsers, similar to the way concept cars predict the future of automobiles. One of its novelties is the ability to seamlessly hop between discovering new content and chatting with friends, or even share online discoveries while browsing.
Over the last year, we have introduced a series of new features such as free VPN and native ad blocking. Earlier this year we also presented Opera Neon, a concept browser that gave you a glimpse into the future of desktop browsers.
Now, the best parts of Neon are being brought to the new Opera browser, codenamed Reborn.
Chat with your friends while browsing
The included messengers are Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Telegram. To use any of them, simply click their icon. After you log in to the site, there are two ways of using this feature: you can open it in overlay or pin it side-by-side with your current tab. Pinning a communicator allows you to combine online chatting with a full browsing experience. You can also decide which of the messengers to enable in your sidebar by selecting them under ‘Customize start page.’
If you use more than one messenger, you can easily switch between them by using our shortcut key for quicker access (⌘ + ⇧ + m on macOS, CTRL + SHIFT + m on Windows and Linux).
Give your browser a new coat of colors
Reborn is a project that is incrementally redesigning the entirety of Opera’s user experience. Apart of the new messenger experience, it brings you several UI improvements. One that you will surely fall in love with is the new colors
Fresh look and feel
Opera now has a completely new user interface that is truly modern, simplified, refined and playful.
New icons are even more refined and elegant, and some even change colors when active. We have carefully optimized the icons for various DPIs in order to make them look perfect.
Animations make the Reborn interface more alive and playful. The most visible one can be found when opening private mode.
Performance and security changes
Most graphics processing units (GPUs) can decode videos highly efficiently. With this release, we will send even more videos to the GPU for decoding on Windows. This will allow for significantly higher framerates, higher resolutions, and lower battery usage for these videos.
Opera adds in-form warnings for sensitive fields when the top-level page is not HTTPS. Whenever you start filling in your password or credit card number on a page, which is not HTTPS, the warning will appear.
Under the hood
Opera 45 comes with Chromium 58, and there’s a bunch of changes. If you’re interested in the details of what happened under the hood, have a look at the dev.opera.com post.
Jump in, download the new Opera and let us know what you think of Opera Reborn!
- Opera Stable for Windows
- Opera Stable for macOS
- Opera Stable for Linux – deb packages
- Opera Stable for Linux – RPM packages