Opera's latest browser beta worth the download

Opera released the second beta of its Opera 9.5 browser and typically I'm skeptical of both betas and alternative browsers.

Opera released the second beta of its Opera 9.5 browser and typically I'm skeptical of both betas and alternative browsers. The usual chain of events goes like this: I download a new browser, play with it for a bit and then go back to old reliable Firefox.

That said the latest Opera is pretty snazzy. I was checking the browser out for its security features, but the thing that won me over was the so-called speed-dial feature. You open a new tab and you get nine of your go-to sites instantly.

That may not mean much to most folks, but I often have a dozen or more tabs open. And often forget where I was or what I was doing. Typically these tabs will blow up Firefox 2.0 after about four or five hours as it consumes memory and requires a restart.

The speed-dial is one way around that problem and it may actually save me some time. It's unclear whether the latest Opera will save me time or not, but the speed-dial thing did make me go hmm. And for an alternative browser trying to elbow itself into user habits between Firefox and IE making a potential user go hmm is half the battle.

speeddial.png

Other impressions:

  • Opera, code-named Kestrel, is quick.
  • You can synch your browser across computers and mobile devices. This would be more handy if I could download Opera Mini to my Motorola Q (long story, but Verizon Wireless won't support (or allow) it.

Overall, the latest Opera is worth a download for a test spin.