On the eve of Opera 10.5’s launch, Opera’s co-founder Jon Von Tetzchner sat down to speak with The Register. In a freewheeling conversation, he discussed a wide range of issues including future of the web, evolution of mobile web and of course Opera.
Speaking on the Browser Ballot screen, Opera’s co-founder was hopeful that it would help users across Europe discover faster and safer alternatives to Internet Explorer. While speaking about competitors, Tetzchner was dismissive of Google’s effort, You know what Chrome means? It’s plating, a skin. That’s what Chrome is.
He also indicated that Opera is unlikely to implement the per-process model (each tab is a separate process) employed by Chrome. Unknown to most, Chrome isn’t the first browser to utilize per-process architecture. In fact, it was implemented in Opera for BeOS almost a decade back because, “the BeOS team were very keen on threading”. “We can do that now”, commented Tetzchner, But we find if you do things the Google way, you use a lot more memory.
In spite of minimal presence in the desktop market, Opera has always been a leader in the mobile segment. It championed the philosophy of One Web, even when most of the world was intent on using WAP. Now people can see we were right, said the man who was at Opera’s helm for more than a decade.
Today, Opera believes that P2P is the next stage of Web everywhere. Jon pointed out that Opera is no longer restricted to Computers and Mobile devices. Indeed, Opera is being used in set top boxes, televisions and even cars. Unite – which can convert any system which has Opera installed into a web server, is Opera’s attempt at tackling the demands of the evolving web.
Today a photo you take on your phone [waves E71] stays on your phone. But if each phone had an IP address, and then people could connect to you and see it. That’s why we think you’ll have Unite everywhere. We want to bring home the message that the web will be everywhere, in your mobile, in your GPS, in your set top box.
Opera also sees the browser as the next application development platform. Although, Jon pointed out that what Google calls HTML5 is really an attempt to create a common platform for their services, he agreed that browsers are the best option when it came to running cross-platform applications.