There’s no dearth of Chromium-based browsers, and this list is continuously expanding with each passing year. But even with a plethora of options available to the end-users, there seems to be a genuine inclination towards the Opera Browser.
Among the oldest web browsers, it has its root firmly set in this domain from all the way back to over two decades ago. And there hasn’t been any dent in its popularity since then. From welcoming new features to improving the overall stability, there has been a lot of reasons for its rise in popularity.
Then in recent years, it has upped its game in the privacy domain as well. The incorporation of VPN and AdBlockers are a perfect example of the same. Likewise, its Multimedia Tools, as well as the seamless integration via Bookmarks, Cross-Device Sync, and the My Flow feature have managed to attract quite a lot of eyeballs.
Keeping all these points in mind, this comprehensive guide will make you aware of all the nifty features that Opera has in its arsenal. Likewise, a few of its shortcomings will also be addressed. So without further ado, let’s get started.
Built-in Ad/Tracker Blocker
The browser comes built-in with its own ad blocker that is known to block all the harmful and intrusive ads. Along the same lines, it also comes with a tracker blocker that stops all malicious and dangerous scripts from running as well as stopping them from tracking your online activities.
Likewise, these blockers also stop cryptocurrency mining scripts and crypto-jacking. All this leads to dual benefits. First off, you get a more secure browsing experience, which is more along the obvious lines. The second benefit is the fact that webpages will now load much quicker than before is it doesn’t have to load any ads or scripts.
To enable the ad blocker, go to Settings > Block Ads > Enable the Block ads and surf the web up to three times faster toggle. Likewise, Tracker Blocker could be enabled via the Settings > Basic > Privacy Protection > Enable the Block Trackers option.
However, if you wish to support any publisher, then Opera has given you the option to customize your blocking rule and add the desired websites to the whitelist. The same could be done via the Manage Exception option.
The browser also has its own VPN service built in so that you don’t have to take the help of any third-party app or service. For the unaware, a Virtual Private Network directs your network traffic via its own networks. This not only helps you to browse privately by hiding your actual IP Address but also allows you to access geo-restricted content.
As soon as you enable the VPN, Opera will automatically allocate the nearest server to you. Furthermore, you could also add search engines to the whitelist so that they are able to bypass the VPN and display search results related to your actual location, rather than the proxied one.
To enable this VPN, head over to Settings > Advanced > Privacy and Security > Click on Enable VPN. Likewise, you may also enable the “Bypass VPN for default search engines” toggle under the VPN section.
Opera has seemed to have struck a chord when it comes to the Bookmark. To begin with, you could easily create, edit and delete your preferred bookmarks with just a single click. Likewise, there’s also a Bookmark bar where you could add your frequently visited sites and access them as and when needed.
Moreover, you could also categorize websites under a separate Bookmark folder. This gives you a clutter-free look and also makes it quite easy to search for a particular website. The browser also gives you an option to import bookmarks from other web browsers or export them from Opera to other browsers via an HTML file.
If you are logged in with your Opera account across various devices, then you could seamlessly sync all the browser data across these devices. Be it the bookmarks, passwords, history, settings, shortcuts, or even the tabs that you have opened, you could access them from all the linked devices.
The My Flow Feature, allows you to share your preferred content across all the synced devices. So if you come across an intriguing piece of write-up, any funny video clip, or a URL on your PC, then you directly send them to the Opera browser installed on your smartphone.
Well, My Flow even has a built-in media player so that you could directly view the shared image or video, without leaving the Opera ecosystem. To try it out, you need to enable My Flow from the Easy Setup menu. Once that is done, go to the sidebar, hit the My Flow icon to bring up the QR Code. Now scan this code via your smartphone and the setup stands complete.
The browser has some pretty useful multimedia tools up its sleeves. First off, there’s a Video pop-out feature that allows you to play any video in a PiP (Picture-in-Picture) Mode. This will send the video to a windowed mode and occupy only a corner of your screen.
As a result, you could easily continue with your work and at the same time check out the video being played, all within a single tab. Furthermore, you could easily adjust the size of this window or drag and drop to any preferred location on your screen.
Then there’s a Snapshot Tool that allows you to take and edit screenshots on the go. Talking about which, you could easily customize the screengrab via Zoom, Blur, Marker, Text, Emoji, among others, right from the Snapshot tool itself. To try it out, you just need to invoke the tool via the Shift + Ctrl + 5 shortcut keys combination.
Similar to Edge’s Collections or Chrome’s Tab Groups, Workspaces allows you to create separate groups for tabs belonging to a particular domain. For example, you could create a professional workspace and send all your office-related tabs to that section.
Likewise, you may let your Netflix and YouTube tabs have a separate abode under the Streaming workspace. You could add up to 5 tabs in each space, give each of these workspaces a name for easier identification, hide them when they are non-active, or even delete them altogether. All these options related to Workspace can directly be accessed from the Sidebar itself.
There is a slew of personalization options baked into this browser that you could use to customize the experience. To begin with, each new tab comes with a News Feed, which by default shows the most popular happenings close to your region. However, you have the complete liberty to tweak it and change the language and region of these contents.
Another pretty useful feature that we found out is the incorporation of social media handles. These include the likes of WhatsApp. FB Messenger, Telegram, Instagram, Twitter among others. Opera has also included a direct shortcut for each of the Instant Messaging platforms so that you could easily access them with just a single click.
While I was reluctant to use it at first as my PC already comes with this functionality, but after trying it out, there was no looking back. Once you give Opera the required permission, it will automatically enable its own Battery Saver and limit most of the backend activities.
Prefer dealing with virtual currencies? Well, then you would be glad to know that Opera has a separate section just for this purpose. It comes with its own built crypto wallet through which you could send, receive and manage your cryptocurrency.
It has also incorporated a converter that allows you to convert the values of popular cryptocurrency (such as Bitcoin and Etherium) to your preferred currency. All these options are present under Settings > Crypto Wallet.
Bottom Line: Opera Browser for Computer
Opera Browser: Overview and FeaturesAs you might have noticed, Opera has left no stones unturned and has managed to checkmark all the prerequisites that a user could have asked for from a web browser. With that said, it does have a few shortcomings as well.
There was an Opera Turbo feature baked into the web browser that automatically compressed various components of a webpage and hence ended up saving considerable network bandwidth. However, that feature has now been removed from the browser, which has left many users on a slightly confused note.
Apart from that, we also found out that the support for third-party extensions wasn’t as extensive as that of Google Chrome. While their domain is expanding, it’s yet to reach the level of the offering from the Silicon Valley giants.
In a nutshell, we are definitely seeing some upscale progress being made by Opera. And it might be only a matter of time before it sheds off its tagline of being one of the best Chromium browsers and comes out as among the best across all the platforms.
All in all, Chrome, Edge, and Firefox are going to have tough competition, and we, the end-users, would be the ultimate beneficiary. So with that, we round off this guide. What are your views about the Opera Browser? Do let us know valuable opinions in the comments section below.
Lastly, here are the recommended web browsers for your computer and mobile phone that you should give a try.
|Chrome Windows||Chrome Mac||Chrome iOS||Chrome Android||Firefox Linux|
|Firefox Windows||Safari Mac||Safari iOS||Edge Android||Chrome Linux|
|Edge Windows||Firefox Mac||Edge iOS||Samsung Internet||Edge Linux|
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