It has fewer bells and whistles than Internet Explorer, but you get much more speed and fewer system crashes in the tradeoff. Also, since Opera hasn't been a real target for hackers (yet), there's a security benefit, as well. It has a built-in pop-up blocker that, in my anecdotal usage, is superior to the Google pop-up blocker.
They used to offer two versions: a free version with a banner ad that blocked out a good bit of screen space, or a paid version for about forty bucks. Now it's all free, without the banner ad. I wondered how they could make money this way, and now the Washington Post explains:
Giving away the product doesn't automatically mean the company will come into hard financial times. The browser has a built-in search function that allows users to consult Google without opening up another window. Every time a user searches through the Google tool, the search engine pays Opera.
The only time that Opera sometimes lets me down is if I need to look at a heavily formatted web page. Sometimes the webmasters use codes that are specifically intended for Internet Explorer. Fie on them, I say!
Opera also has a built-in news reader, at least in the previous version I use. I will look into upgrading to the new, free version very soon.
Categories: internet, computers
Technorati tags: Opera Browser, web browsers, Internet Explorer, Opera