Opera 10 beta Full Review

By Angsuman Chakraborty, Gaea News Network
Thursday, June 4, 2009

opera 10 beta logoThe battle of browsers is a perennially competitive space. We get to see lots of improvements in the likes of Firefox, Chrome, Opera each month. Here is another one and for once I am impressed with Opera 10 beta. The beta hires a new notable designer and also imports some cool and necessary arrangements that give it a quotable first look from our side. Improved tabs, thumbnails, new speed dial enhancements and a remarkably improvement in speed are some of the features we have figured out by now. So, let me take you to my findings.

Tabs MakeOver

They sported the ability to open multiple tabs in a single window long before that became standard practice. Now a new version available as a “beta” test lets you work with those tabs more easily. A resizable tab bar in Opera 10 lets you stretch the row of tabs at the top so that mini, “thumbnail” versions of your open pages appear inside. That way, you can choose which tab to switch to based on the appearance of the Web page, not just its name.

Opera Turbo Built in compression= better browsing speed

Opera turbo

The new Opera browser also has built-in compression technology that can help improve browsing speeds, particularly for those with dial-up Internet access. Such technology is commonly offered by Internet service providers, but not by browsers. The Company says,

it easily delivers 3x to 4x the speed of slower connections and can offer broadband-like speeds on dial-up.

acid test

Pages load up to 40 percent faster than in Opera 9 And if you go for any of the ACID tests, I am sure, the result will be impressive as I went for one, it gave me a perfect 10 on 10 score which I am too shy to show, lol.


opera design

Opera 10 beta has got a complete re-design that is more welcoming than anything else. You can almost sense a Mac-y look when it first shows up.

  • The active tab is highlighted with a nice gradient, instead of just a flat gray color scheme, and tabs are more clearly connected to their page content.
  • Toolbar buttons have lost their garish colors, replaced with standard Mac-like gray-and-black buttons.
  • Various boxes (URL entry, for instance) have also been reshaped to match the Mac standard.

This time Jon Hicks has contributed to the party and it shows.

Improved Thumbnails

Thumbnails aren’t new to browsers. Microsoft Corp.’s Internet Explorer offers them, as do previous versions of Opera. But Opera 10 lets you see those thumbnails up top while you continue to browse a Web site normally in the larger space below. IE lets you do one or the other.

Speed Dial

opera beta 10 speed dial

Opera 10 retains the Speed Dial feature, which displays thumbnails of your favorite sites, not just your open ones — similar to what’s available on Google Inc.’s Chrome and Apple Inc.’s Safari browsers. You simply click on any thumbnail to load the full site. The new version is more customizable: Instead of just nine Speed Dial sites, you can choosefour, nine, 12, 16, 20, or 25 icons. and again, you can have customizable background too as you see in the pic above.

Better Integration with web based services

Opera integrates well with your preferred web based services and uses some artificial grey cells to make your jobs easier as well as doesn’t ask dumb questions. Suppose, if you’re a Gmail user, you can tell Opera 10 Beta to use Gmail when you click on a contact link on a Web page. You can do the same thing with RSS feeds, and point them to your favorite Web-based feed reader instead of a desktop app.


It’s not clear whether any of these features will significantly improve Opera’s market share, which is tiny compared with market leader Internet Explorer and the increasingly popular Firefox. Unlike IE, though, Opera has versions for Mac and Linux computers as well.

{thanks to: Burae news and macworld.com]


September 2, 2009: 9:02 am

These new features doesn’t impress me much but it still has the one feature that keeps me using it - customizable layout. Without any extensions I can put all the tabs to vertical position and loose one line of vertical space. Shouldn’t it be obvious that almost all of the poeple use widescreen today?

marin lutz
August 11, 2009: 4:50 pm

Opera 10 beta impressive? Huh? Spiffed up speed dial and tab previews [both present in Firefox for months, at least] are nice but are minor me-too features.
The only potential Big Deal, that one would expect to find on a version 10, well, i can only say that our experiences differ…
I timed Opera 9.6’s times on several big sites, and compared them to 10’s times. Guess what? Opera 10 is zero percent faster.
Worst of all, Opera still refuses to fix its lame widget system, or page scrambling. Until it matches Firefoxes extensions, and displays pages without distorting them, they’ll continue to be ignored, and lose even more users like me, who love its stability [Firefox's fatal flaw!]. And that stability [and better ergonomics] is the only reason why it has any users left.
Opera is as deep into denial about its extensions as Mozilla is about its instability.

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