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June 08 2018

09:53

Opera for Android 46 comes with themes and night mode

The Opera for Android team has been busy adding a lot of new things for you in the latest version. We listen to comments and suggestions from our users, and we know that personalization and customization are valued.

Themes

We are happy to announce themes! Now you can browse with your own style. Tweak the color theme and join the dark side, or the light… or enjoy the classic Opera red. You’ll find these themes in Settings.

Night mode

Reading content is mostly what a web browser is about. Now, it will be even more convenient to read late at night. Experience less eyestrain and more comfortable reading in the dark with the new night mode, which is easily accessible from the main menu.

Private tabs notification

If you are using our private tabs to keep some things to yourself, there will now be a small ghost as a reminder of these open private tabs in the notification tray. Tapping this notification will close all your private tabs.

 

Copy, paste and QR-code scanning

Want to copy or paste a web address? This is now available with one tap from the address bar.

There is now also a QR code scanner. Just tap the icon found in the right side of the address bar instead of manually entering the address.

 

Oh, and upon request from our users, you can now turn off trending searches suggestions if you don’t like seeing them. You will find this option in Settings.

Thanks for using Opera! Please let us know what you think in the comments below. We are already at work on the next release. Stay tuned and happy browsing! // The Opera for Android Team

 

March 08 2018

13:46

Happy International Women’s Day – The women behind the Opera browser Part II

Today is International Women’s Day, the day where women from different fields, educational levels and backgrounds are recognized and celebrated all around the world for their achievements.

Presently, women make up just 17% of the tech workforce , thus more and more women are encouraged to pursue careers in tech. Initiatives such as Girls who Code  and conferences such as European Women in Technology support this movement passionately.

With Opera being a tech company, we are very proud of the strong women that work for us in all different departments, from finance to marketing, sales to product design, engineering and quality assurance, to distribution and data analysis.

In celebration of this day, we want to introduce to you to some of the women behind the Opera browsers.

Meet Ola!

What’s your name and your role at Opera?

Ola Berjak, software developer.

What excites you about your daily work?

Solving real-life problems. I work on Opera Mini, a mobile browser that is used daily by millions of people worldwide. It is amazing to see the world through this lens – for example, by finding out that our servers are under high load because there’s a huge cricket match happening right now. Being able to make a positive impact on people’s lives is a great motivator.

What did you study?

Computer Science for solid technical background and Quantitative Methods in Economics and Information Systems (that’s one long name :-)) for more insight into analytics and economics in general.

When did you start to think about pursuing a career in tech?

At the age of 7, when we got our first computer in the house – a hand-me-down Toshiba Satellite notebook. I’ve had a few other ideas since that day (being a lawyer would be one – inspired by a popular Polish TV series) but pursuing a tech job stayed with me over all these years. However, my first serious introduction to computer science was at the age of 19 when I started my CS degree.

What challenges are you facing as a woman working in tech?

Lack of women in leadership positions that I could look up to.

What would your advice to women considering pursuing a career in tech be?

There are many paths in tech that you can follow, pick the one that appeals to you the most. From my personal experience, you don’t need to be a hardcore programmer that wrote her first lines code in the 80s using BASIC to have a rewarding job as a programmer (but it’s equally cool if you actually did that, too!). Don’t be afraid to ask questions and be curious – everything comes with time and practice. Keep being your awesome self.

Are there any specific Book/Blogs/Apps you enjoy & recommend ?

“We Should All Be Feminists” essay by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

The “So you want to be a wizard” zine by Julia Evans: https://jvns.ca/zines/#so-you-want-to-be-a-wizard . Trust me, it’s about programming :-). I also enjoy reading Julia’s other zines – she’s great!

Who or what inspires you?

My mum – she has recently graduated with her first degree at the age of 53, took up a related postgraduate course AND found a job in her new field.

What do you enjoy doing outside of work?

Travelling as much as I can, taking up new sports, baking cakes.

3 tips you would give your younger self?

Don’t worry too much about what other people think.

No one can have it all.

Sleep is good.

Meet Michalina!

What’s your name and your role at Opera?

Michalina / QA

What excites you about your daily work?

I like problems. The more complicated they are, the more I like them. But the most I like is to discover them, which is why I’m feeling good in my role as Quality Assurance.

What did you study?

When I had to choose my study I was a member of the basketball team of the University of Wroclaw. So that was obvious that I should study at the University of Wroclaw. There was only one direction I could choose due to the examinations. I was good in math and that forced me to select Informatics.

When did you start to think about pursuing a career in tech?

When I started looking for a job my good friend from studies persuaded me to apply to Opera. I was accepted and I’m still here 🙂

What challenges are you facing as a woman working in tech?

When you hide after the large monitors in your comfortable workspace it doesn’t matter if you are woman or man. You just need to focus on your job and turn on logical thinking. The output matters.

What would your advice to women considering pursuing a career in tech be?

Just be yourself, stay confident and focus on your purposes.

Are there any specific Book/Blogs/Apps you enjoy & recommend ?

I know many books or blogs…. but unfortunately, they are mostly about cycling and sports diets 😉

Who or what inspires you?

Life and its unpredictability – we can try to follow the path but we never can be sure where it ends.

What do you enjoy doing outside of work?

In my free time, I’m all devoted to mountain biking! Training, racing, but also a good and healthy diet. In nature with my 29er, I feel freedom, fun and I can forget about every problem found in my job 😉

3 tips you would give your younger self?

– Less stress

– More fun

– Better balance

 

Have any questions? Feel free to leave a comment and make sure to check out Part I. Happy International Women’s Day!

10:34

Happy International Women’s Day – The women behind the Opera browser Part I

Today is International Women’s Day, the day where women from different fields, educational levels and backgrounds are recognized and celebrated all around the world for their achievements.

Presently, women make up just 17% of the tech workforce , thus more and more women are encouraged to pursue careers in tech. Initiatives such as Girls who Code  and conferences such as European Women in Technology support this movement passionately.

With Opera being a tech company, we are very proud of the strong women that work for us in all different departments, from finance to marketing, sales to product design, engineering and quality assurance, to distribution and data analysis.

In celebration of this day, we want to introduce to you to some of the women behind the Opera browsers.

Meet Joanna!

What’s your name and your role at Opera?

I am Joanna Czajka – Product Manager of Opera Desktop, Design Lead

What excites you about your daily work?

On a daily basis, I enjoy working with people. Seeking solutions, solving problems, creating new ideas. It is amazing how different minds can shape something altogether, going through the design, development and marketing processes, which are not always easy. Then our work is going to users, we’re getting feedback, learn from it and start a new process again. I call it my daily driver though, not an excitement.

What did you study?

I studied art and animation in Poland and the UK, creating two diploma movies in 2D and 3D animations.

When did you start to think about pursuing a career in tech?

I cannot recall a special moment. I always enjoyed making 2D and 3D animations in digital programs, as this combines artistic and technical thinking and skills. Then, I guess, every project or life decision led me to a very tech company such as Opera.

What challenges are you facing as a woman working in tech?

I am not sure if when something is a challenge for me it is because I am a woman, or a designer, or because of my personality. I guess men have challenges in tech, too. I think that if something is hard for you or is having a bad impact on you, you need to understand the reason or source and try to fix it. Making excuses are not an option.

What would your advice to women considering pursuing a career in tech be?

Learn and work. Nothing is more valuable and motivating than a sense of your own experience growing project by project. Learn from the best people you may know. Join interesting projects (even if for free at the beginning).

Are there any specific Book/Blogs/Apps you enjoy & recommend?

If you like any topic, just dig into it how much you can. For young designers, I would recommend to search for knowledge and inspiration more in art, rather than the internet. It can deepen your approach to a design process. I read books about architecture or industrial design as I love seeking analogies between art and interface design.
I also recommend playing games. Games consist of three important things which you can observe and learn: creating understandable mechanics so people know how to play; creating crispy visuals so people want to play; and creating a narrative so people can engage and don’t stop playing (and become addicted, too ;)). I played games and redrew them on paper many times to understand their mechanics.

Who or what inspires you?

Everything can be an inspiration if you look at the world around you and enjoy it as it is.

What do you enjoy doing outside of work?

Working in tech and in a company that offers a product worldwide makes me think about the whole world everyday. Simple things like weekend mountainside trips, sketching in a notepad or being with a family helps me renew my energy.

3 tips you would give your younger self?

It’s better to have tips for now or your future self. Then, it will lead you to something new.

Meet Kornelia!

What’s your name and your role at Opera?

My name is Kornelia Mielczarczyk. I’ve been a QA Engineer in Opera Software since 2012.

What excites you about your daily work?

I love working with Opera’s users. It gives me a lot of joy when I can see the interaction between us. We build the product for millions of users and that makes me proud!

What did you study?

I studied at Wrocław University of Science and Technology, Faculty of Environmental Engineering.

When did you start to think about pursuing a career in tech?

I think my dad, who graduated from a radio technical school, instilled in me the desire to be an engineer. I’ve always been more of a ‘tech girl’ than a humanist.

What challenges are you facing as a woman working in tech?

In our office, there are no differences between men and women. I’m really lucky because I’ve never faced any discrimination or difficulties because of the fact that I’m a woman.

What would your advice to women considering pursuing a career in tech be?

I would tell them the same thing that I’m telling my daughters every day – if you work hard and be a good person, you can be anyone you want. Just go, girl! Be brave and win the world!

Are there any specific Book/Blogs/Apps you enjoy & recommend ?

I like traveling blogs a lot. I love following the adventures of The Bucket List Family, momentsofyugen.com or the Adamo Family . On my phone you’ll find a lot of applications accidently installed by my kids 😉 I’m the type of person who uses a phone to only make a phone call. But, I use some apps to help me organize my day, remind about events, and so on. When you have three kids your schedule is pretty loaded with birthday parties and school events. I’ve been reading a lot of parenting guides lately. What have delighted me lately are the Khaled Hosseini books, where you can read about women’s life in Afghanistan.

Who or what inspires you?

I admire everyone who leaves their previous life for a year or more and embarks on a journey. I hope I can afford it one day. I think that nothing educates a person as much as traveling does – new experiences, flavors, cultural differences … I want to show my children the world and its diversity.

What do you enjoy doing outside of work?

I spend a lot of time with my kids and looking for attractions in the city for them. I love cooking, and I attend yoga and pilates classes.

3 tips you would give your younger self?

Go for a ‘Work & travel’ trip because that’s the best way to learn languages and see the world. Don’t be afraid to be unconventional sometimes. Be brave!

Have any questions? Feel free to leave a comment and make sure to check out Part II. Happy International Women’s Day!

February 20 2018

11:31

Google Chrome turns on BAS ad blocking – a step forward or too little, too late?

Almost two years ago, we released the first versions of the Opera browsers with native ad blockers. We made the decision to integrate an opt-in ad blocker into our browsers as we observed a surge in installations of extension-based ad blockers. When we asked people why they used ad blockers, the answer was clear: they wanted to stop being annoyed and for web pages to load faster. They were, however, experiencing the opposite as websites continued to grow in size and load more slowly than ever. The reason for this were bad ads.

The advertising industry also took notice of the growth of ad blockers due to bad ads, and the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) admitted in 2015 that the industry “messed up” . As a result, the Coalition for Better Ads introduced its Better Ads Standards (BAS) initiative. According to the coalition, 12 types of particularly annoying web experiences, including pop-up ads or large, sticky ads, should be avoided.  

As Google Chrome introduces its own ad blocker, which is switched on by default and blocks ads according to the Better Ads Standards, it’s time for us to have a look at whether the move will impact the demand for ad blockers.

Opera vs. Chrome – how do the ad blockers compare?

Opera and Google have taken different approaches to ad blocking. Google has decided to switch their ad blocker on by default, meaning all Chrome users will get it whether they intentionally want to block ads or not. Chrome, however, only blocks ads on sites which have been blacklisted by Google for not following the Better Ads Standards.

At Opera, we have decided to make ad blocking an optional feature which can be switched on in the browser settings. Once enabled, Opera’s native ad blocker works on all sites but it can be switched off for individual websites, allowing users to make their choice as to whether the ads presented there are worth their time.

Opera also comes with a feature which allows users to benchmark the loading speed of websites with and without ad blocking. We introduced this tool in order to raise awareness about the impact ads have on the browsing experience.

The real difference between the Opera and Chrome ad blockers, however, becomes apparent when we take a closer look at the actual speed impact for users:

The results show that Chrome’s ad blocker does not address the key issue of delivering a faster browsing experience. In our testing, we didn’t observe any significant speed gain from the ad blocker in Chrome.

The reason for such results is that Chrome only blocks a very small fraction of ads that are used by only a fraction of the world’s websites. In a different study , Adblock Plus found that Chrome’s ad blocker only blocked nine out of the 55 types of ads currently used online.

Demand for ad-blockers will continue to increase

Since 2011, an average website has tripled in size, now taking up an average of 3MB. According to Speedcurve , website size is likely to increase to more than 4MB by 2019 and much of this is will be taken up by images, even more video content and style sheets. Moreover, the advertising industry still hasn’t delivered ad solutions that would be lighter and more acceptable for website visitors.

Source: https://speedcurve.com/blog/web-performance-page-bloat/

According to eMarketer , ad blocker usage is growing worldwide and is likely to exceed 30 percent in the US in 2018.  At Opera, we have experienced a steady rise in the percentage of users who decide to switch our ad blocker on. Even though only available as an opt-in feature in preferences, the usage of Opera’s  ad blocker also grew by 30 percent just between mid-August 2017 and February 2018.

Content blockers are becoming key security and privacy tools

Apart from the need for speed, we have noticed that an increasing number of people are using our ad blocker as a security tool. They simply dislike the idea of being constantly tracked by advertisers but also want to be protected against a particular threat which came to the spotlight during the past few months: cryptojacking.

According to a report by Check Point quoted by FastCompany , cryptojacking malware accounted for two of the three most widespread malware infections globally in December 2017.  Cryptojacking means that some third parties run scripts on your computer or phone to mine cryptocurrencies. The scripts use your devices’ CPU to earn the third party money without your consent while also draining the devices’ batteries and making them hot and slow. Opera became the first major browser maker to introduce cryptojacking protection in all our desktop and mobile products. So if you’re using our browsers, you are safe.

Just to make sure, you can run our cryptojacking test to check if your browser’s ad blocker also blocks cryptocurrency mining scripts.

We need new thinking for the future of ads

We believe Google’s introduction of an ad blocker based on IAB’s Better Ads Standard will for now have a relatively small impact on the web ecosystem. While it might prevent some websites from using the most intrusive types of ads, in its current version it doesn’t address any of the users’ real needs of faster browsing, less annoyance and more safety while surfing the web. It is therefore likely that the demand for real ad blockers will continue to grow. We thus predict that the quest for new ways of monetizing online content is likely to continue.

Hopefully, the industry will take this seriously and look for new models that both users and publishers will accept.

About testing methodology

We tested Chrome 64.0.3282.167 (official, 64-bit) with ad blocker on, and Opera 51.0.2830.26 (stable) on Windows 10 OS build 16299.192. Each website was loaded 15 times and the loading time drawn from Navigation Timing. More details about this method can be found here . The 10 websites used in the test were cnn.com, forbes.com, foxnews.com, huffingtonpost.com, indiatimes.com, news.yahoo.com, nytimes.com, reddit.com,  theguardian.com and washingtonpost.com. The tests were conducted repeatedly on February 19th.

January 30 2018

16:16

Warning: iPhone X scam. Fake: “FREE Apple iPhone X Visitor Browser Opinion Survey” competition

We are currently observing many websites claiming that your browser developer (or your Internet connection provider) has chosen you (or your IP address) to complete a survey, provide personal information or buy some gadgets to win a free iPhone.

Unfortunately, this is a scam. These websites are in no way related to the companies mentioned, including ours. Like other Internet companies, we are trying hard to suppress such websites by blocking them in our browsers. The fake websites are created and multiplied in many variations and it is very difficult for us to block them all automatically.   

You can help us by reporting these websites to the Netcraft database, which is one of Opera’s information sources for our built-in fraud and malware protection mechanism ( https://toolbar.netcraft.com/report_url ).

How do I protect myself from scams?

Before participating in giveaways on the Internet or clicking on pop-up messages that encourage you to win something, make sure to check the website’s URL in the browser address bar carefully and ensure that the giveaway is actually run by the company mentioned in the message. Take a look at the example below and look for the black part of the text:

The website is not apple.com , but rather com-freegift-programme.com, so it isn’t a competition run by Apple.

There are also many good articles on this topic:

Stay safe!

Opera Team

16:16

Warning: iPhone X scam. Fake: “FREE Apple iPhone X Visitor Browser Opinion Survey” competition

We are currently observing many websites claiming that your browser developer (or your Internet connection provider) has chosen you (or your IP address) to complete a survey, provide personal information or buy some gadgets to win a free iPhone.

Unfortunately, this is a scam. These websites are in no way related to the companies mentioned, including ours. Like other Internet companies, we are trying hard to suppress such websites by blocking them in our browsers. The fake websites are created and multiplied in many variations and it is very difficult for us to block them all automatically.   

You can help us by reporting these websites to the Netcraft database, which is one of Opera’s information sources for our built-in fraud and malware protection mechanism ( https://toolbar.netcraft.com/report_url ).

How do I protect myself from scams?

Before participating in giveaways on the Internet or clicking on pop-up messages that encourage you to win something, make sure to check the website’s URL in the browser address bar carefully and ensure that the giveaway is actually run by the company mentioned in the message. Take a look at the example below and look for the black part of the text:

The website is not apple.com , but rather com-freegift-programme.com, so it isn’t a competition run by Apple.

There are also many good articles on this topic:

Stay safe!

Opera Team

January 27 2018

23:01

Data Privacy Day: Tips & tricks on staying safe online from Opera

The Data Privacy Day on January 28 is a date we particularly care about at Opera, since maintaining our users’ privacy has always been important to us and remains a task we care about deeply. Today, we would like to use this opportunity to share some tips and tricks that will help you make sure your browsing experience remains a positive one and that no unwanted parties get hold of your data as you surf the web.

What can you do? Please check out this list of 6 simple tips and tricks to find out more.

1. Protect yourself on public Wifi

There are free Wi-Fi hotspots everywhere and it’s always tempting to connect to one to save mobile data. But be careful. Connecting to these free Wi-Fi hotspots could put your private information at risk. When you connect to a public WiFi hotspot, you could be exposed to malicious attacks. However, while using the Opera desktop browser, you can protect yourself by simply enabling the free built-in VPN function. This means your data is encrypted in transit and ensures it won’t be intercepted even on unsecured WiFi networks. The data is also going through our servers, so websites you visit cannot see your real IP.

2. Use ad blocker to reduce tracking

By enabling Opera’s ad blocker, which is available in all our mobile and PC browsers, you make sure your browsing preferences are less likely to be reported to third party tracking services, such as advertisers.

While we’re at it: Our ad blocker also features a unique anti-cryptojacking tool, which puts you on the safe side, that no one runs scripts on your device to mine cryptocurrencies. This tool keeps your Opera PC and mobile browsers protected. You can try our cryptojackingtest.com to check if your browser is safe.

3. Avoid sharing sensitive data through non-https connections

Using  non-HTTPS connections puts your private data at risk. It is highly recommended that you avoid inputting your sensitive information if you are not sure whether a given website is maintaining best practices for privacy and security.

4. Use incognito mode when you don’t want your browsing history recorded

There are times when you don’t want your browsing history recorded. Like when you’re logging into your email or social-media profiles using a friend’s computer, when you’re accessing your online bank in an internet café or if you’re accessing a website with content on the sexy side. The incognito mode lets you access them and then makes the browser forget.

5. Be aware of privacy terms.

Read the privacy policy and take note of the location of a given company. Opera, for example, is a Norwegian company operating under Norwegian privacy laws, which are among the best when it comes to protecting people’s privacy.

6. Spread the word

It’s important your friends know about privacy – so just let them know what they can do. You can also share this post.

Links

If you want to dig deeper, here are some links you can check out to know more about privacy.

A TED Talk on privacy we find informative:

https://www.ted.com/talks/glenn_greenwald_why_privacy_matters

Useful Opera add-on you can install:

https://addons.opera.com/en/extensions/details/privacy-badger

23:01

Data Privacy Day: Tips & tricks on staying safe online from Opera

The Data Privacy Day on January 28 is a date we particularly care about at Opera, since maintaining our users’ privacy has always been important to us and remains a task we care about deeply. Today, we would like to use this opportunity to share some tips and tricks that will help you make sure your browsing experience remains a positive one and that no unwanted parties get hold of your data as you surf the web.

What can you do? Please check out this list of 6 simple tips and tricks to find out more.

1. Protect yourself on public Wifi

There are free Wi-Fi hotspots everywhere and it’s always tempting to connect to one to save mobile data. But be careful. Connecting to these free Wi-Fi hotspots could put your private information at risk. When you connect to a public WiFi hotspot, you could be exposed to malicious attacks. However, while using the Opera desktop browser, you can protect yourself by simply enabling the free built-in VPN function. This means your data is encrypted in transit and ensures it won’t be intercepted even on unsecured WiFi networks. The data is also going through our servers, so websites you visit cannot see your real IP.

2. Use ad blocker to reduce tracking

By enabling Opera’s ad blocker, which is available in all our mobile and PC browsers, you make sure your browsing preferences are less likely to be reported to third party tracking services, such as advertisers.

While we’re at it: Our ad blocker also features a unique anti-cryptojacking tool, which puts you on the safe side, that no one runs scripts on your device to mine cryptocurrencies. This tool keeps your Opera PC and mobile browsers protected. You can try our cryptojackingtest.com to check if your browser is safe.

3. Avoid sharing sensitive data through non-https connections

Using  non-HTTPS connections puts your private data at risk. It is highly recommended that you avoid inputting your sensitive information if you are not sure whether a given website is maintaining best practices for privacy and security.

4. Use incognito mode when you don’t want your browsing history recorded

There are times when you don’t want your browsing history recorded. Like when you’re logging into your email or social-media profiles using a friend’s computer, when you’re accessing your online bank in an internet café or if you’re accessing a website with content on the sexy side. The incognito mode lets you access them and then makes the browser forget.

5. Be aware of privacy terms.

Read the privacy policy and take note of the location of a given company. Opera, for example, is a Norwegian company operating under Norwegian privacy laws, which are among the best when it comes to protecting people’s privacy.

6. Spread the word

It’s important your friends know about privacy – so just let them know what they can do. You can also share this post.

Links

If you want to dig deeper, here are some links you can check out to know more about privacy.

A TED Talk on privacy we find informative:

https://www.ted.com/talks/glenn_greenwald_why_privacy_matters

Useful Opera add-on you can install:

https://addons.opera.com/en/extensions/details/privacy-badger

October 26 2017

04:39

Welcome to the new Opera forums

Hi,

We are excited to announce that our new forums page is ready. Our revamped community site features a new forums engine, a new visual theme, reorganised and tidied categories, an improved search engine, a simplified yet enhanced posts composer and many other features.

Users of our old forums site will be able to log in to the new forums with their same profile. Profile history and statistics have been retained. All topics and threads have been transferred over as well, allowing you to continue your conversations about all things related to Opera.

We invite you to discover our new Opera forums! Our welcome page will detail everything you need to know about our refurbished meeting place.

04:39

Welcome to the new Opera forums

Hi,

We are excited to announce that our new forums page is ready. Our revamped community site features a new forums engine, a new visual theme, reorganised and tidied categories, an improved search engine, a simplified yet enhanced posts composer and many other features.

Users of our old forums site will be able to log in to the new forums with their same profile. Profile history and statistics have been retained. All topics and threads have been transferred over as well, allowing you to continue your conversations about all things related to Opera.

We invite you to discover our new Opera forums! Our welcome page will detail everything you need to know about our refurbished meeting place.

July 12 2017

04:00

Join us to fight for net neutrality

At Opera, we’ve always fought against all kinds of technical thresholds that could slow down the speed of internet for almost two decades with using our compression technology . They are the device hardware that does not have enough CPU power or memory to render web pages, crowded Wi-Fi network, or web pages filled with oversize images, video or heavy programming. We’ve also fought against high mobile data costs and limited mobile network bandwidth to speed up the internet and lower the costs to access the web for those in need.

Barriers to fair internet access continue raising. In the US, the FCC is planning to give internet service providers control over what people can see and do on the web, with the power to slow down websites. This is a threat to net neutrality. If we lost net neutrality, people could soon have the web where some of their favorite sites are forced into a slow lane online, while deep-pocketed companies have special fast lane access to reach their users. This is against our efforts to make the internet faster and more affordable.

Today we join hands with web sites, online communities, and internet users, like yourself, to sound the alarm about the threat to net neutrality. By accessing this site , you will be able to submit a comment to the FCC and Congress.

If you join, we will be able to stop the FCC from destroying net neutrality rules. You can also change your social media profile pictures to show off your support and invite your friends, families, followers to take action 🙂

 

Love these avatars? You can get more and learn about this campaign here .

 

04:00

Join us to fight for net neutrality

At Opera, we’ve always fought against all kinds of technical thresholds that could slow down the speed of internet for almost two decades with using our compression technology . They are the device hardware that does not have enough CPU power or memory to render web pages, crowded Wi-Fi network, or web pages filled with oversize images, video or heavy programming. We’ve also fought against high mobile data costs and limited mobile network bandwidth to speed up the internet and lower the costs to access the web for those in need.

Barriers to fair internet access continue raising. In the US, the FCC is planning to give internet service providers control over what people can see and do on the web, with the power to slow down websites. This is a threat to net neutrality. If we lost net neutrality, people could soon have the web where some of their favorite sites are forced into a slow lane online, while deep-pocketed companies have special fast lane access to reach their users. This is against our efforts to make the internet faster and more affordable.

Today we join hands with web sites, online communities, and internet users, like yourself, to sound the alarm about the threat to net neutrality. By accessing this site , you will be able to submit a comment to the FCC and Congress.

If you join, we will be able to stop the FCC from destroying net neutrality rules. You can also change your social media profile pictures to show off your support and invite your friends, families, followers to take action 🙂

 

Love these avatars? You can get more and learn about this campaign here .

 

May 17 2017

11:28

Ads eat more than half of the page loading time

While advertising is an important part of the internet, much of today’s web is plagued with slow loading ads. Cumbersome ads are one of the main reasons why people choose to use an ad blocker. These ads are also a major issue for the websites themselves.

To illustrate the problem, we have released results from a new online research which shows that we lose, on average, more than half of the time spent waiting for pages to load due to bad ads, slowing down the browsing experience.

The research was done manually with the speed test tool built into the Opera browser. You can run a speed benchmark test yourself to check how quickly any web page loads with ad blocking turned on, as well as how many ads were blocked. The time difference shows how long a page would load if ads and ad trackers were blocked or unblocked.

 

Bloated ads haven’t gone away

Last year, we challenged the online ad industry by releasing a built-in ad blocker to push the idea that there should be a switch towards more user-friendly ads. However, the switch towards lighter ads is moving too slow , causing more and more people to start blocking ads.

Bloated ads remain the main performance issue for billions of users around the world. They waste valuable time every day as we wait for our web content to display.

Research findings

Opera conducted its online ad research* on the nine most popular news websites worldwide (according to SimilarWeb ). The results showed that, on average, a single website is 51% slower when loading with unblocked ads (3.8 seconds) compared when loading with blocked ads (1.89 seconds). In other words, news websites could be displayed 51% faster if ads were blocked.

In total, heavy and slow ads cause billions of lost browsing hours every month, all time that could be spent for other, more productive activities.

 

 

Another test** we made showed that ads significantly reduce the laptop battery life. With ad block turned on, the battery life when browsing was 5 hours and 14 minutes. Without an ad blocker, battery life was shortened to 4 hours and 39 minutes. This translates into a 12.9% loss. Assuming that the average user spends over four hours daily on the internet , ads squeeze their laptop battery life by over 31 minutes per day, and almost 15 hours and 39 minutes every month.

 

People are looking for solutions

Modern standards for light, non-intrusive online ad formats have, unfortunately, not been widely implemented by the ad industry yet. This situation causes the demand for ad blocking to continue to increase. Since ad block extensions are still too slow, built-in ad block technologies are gaining interest in the browser industry.

With serious performance issues, a shift towards less intrusive and privacy-friendly online ad practices is the most urgent challenge for the web today. Brands and advertisers need to finally understand this.

 

*Opera conducted its tests on the nine most popular news websites worldwide (according to SimilarWeb). For each website, we repeated the tests five times and calculated the average loading time with both disabled and enabled native ad blocking. The difference was the average time we waste on loading a news website. We multiplied it by the average number of pages our users view. The tests were performed on a machine running Windows 10 x64, using an i7-6500U CPU and 8GBs of RAM.

**We used a 14″, i3-5005U, 4GB, 500GB HDD computer with Win 10 using the balanced power profile. The backlight was set to 100% throughout the testing. There was no other software running in the foreground. Laptops were placed on a wooden surface for similar heat exchange.

The browser was automated using WinAPI event injection. For battery status information, IOCTL_BATTERY_QUERY_STATUS was used.

Battery remaining capacity was measured once per minute.

In each configuration (with native ad blocking disabled and enabled), the test was run for two hours.

The tests were done in four steps:

Step 1: Configure the system.

Charge the battery to 100%.

Step 2: Load facebook.com, google.com, amazon.com, yahoo.com, wikipedia.org, vk.com, live.com, twitter.com, youtube.com– in separate tabs.

Step 3: In a loop, scrolling activity was simulated in one of the tabs:

For 30 seconds, pressing the Down Arrow was simulated every 100 milliseconds with

5 seconds of idle time
For 30 seconds, pressing the Up Arrow was simulated every 100 milliseconds with
15 seconds of idle time

Step 4: Each minute, the present battery capacity was recorded.

 

11:28

Ads eat more than half of the page loading time

While advertising is an important part of the internet, much of today’s web is plagued with slow loading ads. Cumbersome ads are one of the main reasons why people choose to use an ad blocker. These ads are also a major issue for the websites themselves.

To illustrate the problem, we have released results from a new online research which shows that we lose, on average, more than half of the time spent waiting for pages to load due to bad ads, slowing down the browsing experience.

The research was done manually with the speed test tool built into the Opera browser. You can run a speed benchmark test yourself to check how quickly any web page loads with ad blocking turned on, as well as how many ads were blocked. The time difference shows how long a page would load if ads and ad trackers were blocked or unblocked.

 

Bloated ads haven’t gone away

Last year, we challenged the online ad industry by releasing a built-in ad blocker to push the idea that there should be a switch towards more user-friendly ads. However, the switch towards lighter ads is moving too slow , causing more and more people to start blocking ads.

Bloated ads remain the main performance issue for billions of users around the world. They waste valuable time every day as we wait for our web content to display.

Research findings

Opera conducted its online ad research* on the nine most popular news websites worldwide (according to SimilarWeb ). The results showed that, on average, a single website is 51% slower when loading with unblocked ads (3.8 seconds) compared when loading with blocked ads (1.89 seconds). In other words, news websites could be displayed 51% faster if ads were blocked.

In total, heavy and slow ads cause billions of lost browsing hours every month, all time that could be spent for other, more productive activities.

 

 

Another test** we made showed that ads significantly reduce the laptop battery life. With ad block turned on, the battery life when browsing was 5 hours and 14 minutes. Without an ad blocker, battery life was shortened to 4 hours and 39 minutes. This translates into a 12.9% loss. Assuming that the average user spends over four hours daily on the internet , ads squeeze their laptop battery life by over 31 minutes per day, and almost 15 hours and 39 minutes every month.

 

People are looking for solutions

Modern standards for light, non-intrusive online ad formats have, unfortunately, not been widely implemented by the ad industry yet. This situation causes the demand for ad blocking to continue to increase. Since ad block extensions are still too slow, built-in ad block technologies are gaining interest in the browser industry.

With serious performance issues, a shift towards less intrusive and privacy-friendly online ad practices is the most urgent challenge for the web today. Brands and advertisers need to finally understand this.

 

*Opera conducted its tests on the nine most popular news websites worldwide (according to SimilarWeb). For each website, we repeated the tests five times and calculated the average loading time with both disabled and enabled native ad blocking. The difference was the average time we waste on loading a news website. We multiplied it by the average number of pages our users view. The tests were performed on a machine running Windows 10 x64, using an i7-6500U CPU and 8GBs of RAM.

**We used a 14″, i3-5005U, 4GB, 500GB HDD computer with Win 10 using the balanced power profile. The backlight was set to 100% throughout the testing. There was no other software running in the foreground. Laptops were placed on a wooden surface for similar heat exchange.

The browser was automated using WinAPI event injection. For battery status information, IOCTL_BATTERY_QUERY_STATUS was used.

Battery remaining capacity was measured once per minute.

In each configuration (with native ad blocking disabled and enabled), the test was run for two hours.

The tests were done in four steps:

Step 1: Configure the system.

Charge the battery to 100%.

Step 2: Load facebook.com, google.com, amazon.com, yahoo.com, wikipedia.org, vk.com, live.com, twitter.com, youtube.com– in separate tabs.

Step 3: In a loop, scrolling activity was simulated in one of the tabs:

For 30 seconds, pressing the Down Arrow was simulated every 100 milliseconds with

5 seconds of idle time
For 30 seconds, pressing the Up Arrow was simulated every 100 milliseconds with
15 seconds of idle time

Step 4: Each minute, the present battery capacity was recorded.

 

April 19 2017

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