Opera denies Microsoft takeover rumours

As the phones ring off the hook at Opera, the browser vendor insists rumours that Microsoft is buying it out are unfounded
Written by Matt Loney, Contributor

Opera on Friday denied the latest takeover rumour spreading round the Internet, saying that it has not had any approaches from Microsoft or anyone else.

Rumours surfaced on Friday morning that Microsoft is close to completing a takeover offer for the Norwegian browser vendor, having outbid Google.

"Our phones have been ringing off the hook," said a spokesman for Opera. "But it's not true. We have not been bought, and we have not received any offers. It's just a rumour, like the Google rumour last week."

If Microsoft were to buy Opera it would effectively reduce the battle for browsers on Windows PCs to two contenders: Microsoft and the Mozilla Foundation.

Although Opera's market share has languished at less than 1 percent, compared to Firefox's 7.55 percent and IE's 86.9 percent, Opera's mobile browser is installed on a growing number of mobile devices, and the company says that downloads of its desktop browser quadrupled after it launched the free version 8.5 in October.

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