updated 07:29 am EDT, Tue May 21, 2013
Opera for Android out of beta, already passes 350K downloads
Opera for Android has now exited beta, three months after it was first made available to users through the Google Play Store. The official release is free and is available for download now. Opera touts a number of features that users will prefer over other mobile browsers including an 'Off-Road' mode that helps to stabilize web connections when the connections become patchy, while also reducing data consumption.
The Opera browser, which is built on the Webkit engine, also incorporates a new function it calls 'Discover.' It is activated with a swipe to the right of the home screen and offers users a range of categories including Arts, News and Technology, among others, from which users can access new content from websites that they have yet to come across. According to Rikard Gillemyr, EVP of Consumer Products at Opera Software, 'Discover' offers users "a relaxed way of discovering interesting articles and checking them out without any extra effort.
Early user reviews are positive with the app rated 4.5 stars after around 350k downloads. Electronista has given Opera for Android a quick hands-on and we think that it is worth checking out. The 'Discover' function is interesting and is like having StumbleUpon built right into the browser. 'Speed Dial' also looks useful allowing users to keep all their favorite sites as small app-like icons on a home screen for quick access. Subjectively, the browser seems about on par with Chrome for speed. [via TechCrunch]