As predicted, Opera 10.5 (final) for Windows is here. Yesterday, the Browser Choice screen went live in European Union countries and quite obviously, Opera is hoping to woo new users with their latest offering. However, does it have enough to challenge the likes of Firefox and Chrome?
Opera Software promised to deliver speed and with Opera 10.5, they have managed to deliver it with a dash of panache. Opera 10.5 features a markedly improved user interface (UI), which makes the best use of modern operating systems. The tab bar has been merged with the title bar and all the menu options are now offered through a single O-menu button. Opera 10.5 also makes use of Windows 7 features such as Jumplists and taskbar tabs.
The overall browsing experience is a lot more fluid thanks to the attention paid to minute details. The annoying dialogue boxes used in previous versions of Opera have been replaced with overlay boxes, which don’t get in your way. The address bar, search bar as well as the zoom button has received small tweaks but these minute changes have a big effect on the pleasantness of the UI.
Private Browsing has also been introduced in this version. Although Opera is the last of the major browsers to implement this feature, its implementation is probably the best. Opera supports Private Windows as well as Private Tabs. When you open a Private Tab or Window any browsing activity performed within that specific tab/window won’t be recorded.
Opera 10.5 is an immensely impressive browser. Whether it is the best browser or not simply boils down to personal preferences. Nevertheless, it should please anyone looking for a fast and pleasant web browsing experience.