Goodbye traditional bookmarking, Opera brings in visual bookmarks

Over the past year, the Opera desktop team did a great deal of research in order to understand what bookmarking options people are looking for today. They realized that many people use bookmarks as a way of tracking their memories, like travel inspiration or a fascinating article. And, since our memories are often visual, they decided to redesign the whole concept of bookmarking.

Traditional bookmarking systems simply note the location of the page. Opera’s new visual approach lets users choose a thumbnail for each new bookmark from the webpage itself. This transforms bookmarks into a collection of favorites – websites, products, memories, and more.

How it works
To bookmark a page, Opera for Windows and Mac users can click the heart icon to the right of the address field in the browser. Then, they can assign an image for their bookmark and select a folder to add it to. The bookmarks are stored as thumbnails, which users can rename and rearrange.

Diwali recipes bookmark

Easily bookmark your favorite Diwali recipes

You can download the latest version of the Opera web browser for your computer/ laptop from here.

We’d love to know your comments about this new visual bookmarking feature. Drop in your comments below.

Video chat from within your browser with 1Click

Opera Software India Buzz graphic

With ever expanding geographies, more and more people are taking on to video chat to keep in touch with those that matter to them. But whether it’s creating a login, downloading the right plugins or struggling with low network speeds, video chatting still remains a cumbersome process.

Hrishikesh Kulkarni realized that gap and came up with an innovative video calling solution called 1Click. The solution uses WebRTC which enables users to video chat from their browser itself. WebRTC is also supported by Opera for Android , so you can video chat with your friends from within your  mobile browser, without downloading a separate application.

Since browsers are at the heart of what he does, for our latest edition of India Buzz, we caught up with Kulkarni, Founder & CEO, 1Click to have a quick chat on how he is taking video chatting to the next level.

What is 1Click?

With the increase in technological innovations and businesses going online, people are increasingly forgetting to provide their customers with a personal touch. I wanted to bring back that human touch in the business process, which is when I decided I should come up with 1Click. It brings personalization by enabling video/audio based interaction in your browser on your website or app. It is probably the most simple and straightforward video calling software. Businesses do not need any plug-ins, downloads, installation codes or conference rooms to incorporate with it. We believe browser is the new conference room and a great way to bring back the personal touch element. That is the sole reason for us to design and develop a browser driven video infrastructure for business enterprises.

How is 1Click’s user experience better than other WebRTC enabled platforms or even OTT apps?

1Click is cloud based video communication platform. Using our video software, people can record conversations and listen to them at a later stage. Another important feature that we provide is screen sharing. This improves the clarity of the conversation. Since ours is not a mesh design where video/audio is sent peer to peer to each participant. Instead we intelligently leverage the cloud servers to mix and bridge the video/audio. Every participant in the 1Click video call transmits/receives only one video stream regardless of the size of the group video call. That is big differentiation when we compare ourselves to Google Hangout or other WebRTC based solutions.

Hrishikesh Kulkarni, Founder & CEO, 1Click

Hrishikesh Kulkarni, Founder & CEO, 1Click

Does video chatting on mobile increase data bills significantly and especially when people are on fluctuating mobile networks, does 1Click even work? 

Video chatting solutions typically drive up the data usage on the mobile network. But 1Click, with its transcoding video platform, improves the efficiency of a call by ensuring each participant sends/receives only one stream of video. Unlike other WebRTC or Google Hangout solutions which transmit/receive multiple video streams (per participant).

And, yes I do believe 1Click will work well despite fluctuating mobile networks for the simple reason that our video chat has an extremely low bandwidth requirement. We are aware that 2G/3G connection quality in India is not consistent throughout the geography but we are still the best option in places where mobile connection works best.

Since you are in a profession of connecting people, what are some of the other things that interest you personally?

I read a lot on history and art and evolutionary biology. I believe the oldest cultures and religions have survived thanks to extremely stable and viral mass communication techniques. I am fascinated by intersection of Arts and Technology. (Yes, Steve Jobs of Apple has been a big inspiration). I have been toying with the idea of Virtual museums which lets children explore art and history. Besides that, I love travelling and photographing my travel experiences too.

Any message that you would like to give Opera users in India? 

Browsers are no more passive softwares which are used only to consume information. Opera is a great mobile platform which users and developers in India can leverage to build interactivity and produce content. Users in India should look at browsers like Opera and technology like HTML5/CSS3/WebRTC to develop fun interactive learning experiences.

Samsung Gear S smartwatch gets Opera Mini as its first full web browser

For some reason, the smartwatch has been stripped of an internet browser – until today. We’re happy to announce that Opera Mini has become the first web browser on Samsung’s new Tizen-based smartwatch, Samsung Gear S.

Opera Mini is the first web browser to power Samsung’s Gear S smartwatch

Opera Mini is the first web browser to power Samsung’s Gear S smartwatch

Experience designed for small screen web browsing
Opera Mini’s UI makes surfing on small screens a complete breeze. There’s no need to key in your favorite websites, you can access them on your Gear S with a single tap on Speed Dial, which appear as large buttons on the home screen.

You can also get real time updates from your social networks within the browser itself on the Smart Page feature. It also displays links based on sites of your interest, so your preferred content is just a click away.

Navigation on the smart watch is also very convenient. Forget looking for the forward and back buttons, a gentle swipe is all you need on Opera Mini. To zoom in, you can either double-tap with your finger, or pinch to get a more precise view.

Travel friendly features

Opera Mini’s data compression technology shrinks webpages to as little as 10% of their original size. This gives you a super fast browsing experience and helps you stay connected, even in areas with lousy network. You can also save webpages for offline reading.

So, whether you’re running on a treadmill or going to a remote place, you can still enjoy a full-web browsing experience that’s faster and more data-efficient, right from your wrist. The Samsung Gear S runs Opera Mini version 7.5, with all its features and functionality. Samsung Gear S owners will be able to download Opera Mini from Samsung Gear Apps for free.

 

Fastest browser? Why Opera Mini is the choice for you

Nothing excites us more than receiving love and adulation from our users when they use Opera browsers. Opera Mini is one of our most popular browsers and we have millions of users in India. In a recent survey, they listed Speed, Download Manager and Security as the top 3 reasons for using Opera.

Our engineers put in endless hours to make Opera Mini better. If speed is what our users want, then our moto at work is to make Opera Mini the fastest browser.

Aside from conducting internal tests, we also use the services of independent software testing firms to run tests against other browsers.

UC recently published findings of their in-house tests which said that UC 9.8 is faster than Opera Mini when loading Facebook from mobile phones. Such claims are only credible when they’re also supported by independent experts after a thorough test in a tamper-proof automated environment. Which is what we did.

Three cheers for the fastest browser – Opera Mini
We asked Cigniti Technologies, a global leader in independent software testing services, to conduct a benchmarking test to compare Facebook load times on Opera Mini vs UC 9.8.

The tests confirmed that Opera Mini opens Facebook 34% faster on a 3G network and 27% faster on a 2G network compared to UC 9.8.
Speedtest for fastest browser
How’s that for getting faster updates from your friends on Facebook!

How they tested Opera Mini’s speed
Cigniti conducted the performance benchmarking exercise for the Opera Mini browser on the mid-range Samsung Grand 2 device, which is one of India’s best-selling Android smartphones. It has Android KitKat 4.4.2 version with Qualcomm MSM8226 Snapdragon 400 chipset, Quad-core Cortex CPU of 1.2 GHz and internal memory of 1 GB RAM.

To find out the page loading time for Facebook (m.facebook.com) on Opera Mini and UC 9.8, the test was carried out using Airtel 2G and 3G mobile SIM carriers at a high signal strength.

There were 250 iterations on both browsers on 3G and 2G network. The Caches and histories of each browser were cleared before every iteration and the “Page Load Time” i.e. the time taken to load the page was captured for all the iterations.

If you don’t have Opera Mini yet, you can get it for free. Download Opera Mini and enjoy your time online!

Thank you Hyderabad for rocking the #OperaMeetup

We know it took some time, but it finally happened. And, it was totally awesome. #OperaMeetup : Hyderabad edition

Hyderabad has been on our radar for a while now. So, when we started planning our latest series of #OperaMeetup this season, we didn’t need to think twice about which city to begin with.

We met up at an upbeat bistro called Ruci and Idoni, and had a super time with around 40 bloggers and techies from Hyderabad. Time flew as we sampled some amazing Italian food and discussed just about everything from our latest products updates to the best Hyderabadi biryani joint in town.

Opera India organised the first ever #OperaMeetup at Hyderabad.. and it was totally awesome!

Opera India organised the first ever #OperaMeetup at Hyderabad.. and it was totally awesome!

The interactive Q&A session was quite stimulating. We got quite a few queries about our desktop browser. We were very happy to talk about our latest update with over a 1000 extensions and the tab preview feature. We were quite happy to see that some techies who have been following us for a while, remembered the preview feature from our old browser! They also had some hard hitting questions for us! We really hope they got the answers they were looking for. Then there were newbies who quite thrilled to hear about the data compression technology in our mobile browsers. We also met was this super cool blogger, Raghavendra Satish Perry, who is a digital marketer, marathon runner and happens to be visually impaired. He told us how a browser once saved his life and how he works to make the internet more accessible to people.

We even had a fun Opera quiz during which users told us about some crazy apps like Runpee, which tells you when to pee while watching a movie. Yes, there really is an app for everything. And goodies for those who tell us about them ;)

Thank you Hyderabad for showing some much love! We had a complete ball and can’t wait for our next #OperaMeetup in the City of Nawabs. See you guys soon. :)

State of the Android Mobile Web report – India

India is home to the largest population of Opera Mini users in the world. It is also home to the fastest-growing smartphones market in the world. With a plethora of options available at attractive prices, more and more Indian Opera Mini users are now upgrading to smartphones.

We took a closer look at our Android users – the type of devices they use and what keeps them busy online, and came up with the State of the Android Mobile Web report for India.

Here are the highlights:

  • The number of Opera Mini users on Android is as high as the number of Java users, 44% and 45% respectively.
  • A breakdown of the top 100 handsets shows that Micromax has the biggest share (30%) in this category, followed by Samsung (25%).
  • Samsung users consume more data and view more webpages compared to other users.
    There are 77% of Opera Mini users on Android, accessing the web from phones that cost Rs 10,000 and under.
  • Seven out of every ten webpages viewed by Opera Mini users are from Facebook.
  • Shopping portals experienced a mammoth 356% growth in user visits over last year. The most accessed site is Flipkart, followed by Amazon and Snapdeal.
  • More and more users are now accessing education and job portals, as well as blogs.
    Android users on Opera Mini love watching videos on websites, with this category growing by 205% since 2013. YouTube leads this category.

You can download the detailed report and infographic from here.

State of the Android Mobile Web report by Opera Software Infographic

#OperaMeetup in Hyderabad on 24th September

OperaMeetup in HyderabadWe are excited to announce our first #OperaMeetup in Hyderabad. If you use any of the Opera browsers; Opera Mini, Opera for Android, Opera Coast or Opera for computers then just come along. Drop-in even if you have never tried Opera, this is your chance to get to know Opera better.

We’ve been doing some really cool stuff in our labs, creating and re-creating. You might have heard about Opera Coast, our exclusive browser for iOS that gives you an entirely new way to browse on your iPhone or iPad, the handy Discover feature added to Opera for Android, the three compression modes offered in Opera Mini for iOS and much more!

So, join Sunil Kamath, the Bangalorean foodie better known as the VP for South Asia at Opera Software at Ohri’s Ruci & Idoni Bistro on Sept. 24, Wednesday, at 7 p.m. for a evening full of tech talk! Besides sharing the latest about Opera, he’s likely to ask you for the secret behind the brilliance of Hyderabadi briyani! So, come prepared!

Please register on our Meetup Page here: http://bit.ly/XtaZ7t

Thanks,
Team Opera :)

Opera Mini on 50 Micromax Android devices

If you are a Micromax user, then there the chance of you not being aware of Opera Mini is extremely slight. Micromax has been preinstalling Opera Mini not only on its range of Android phones, but also the basic phones with which it started in India.

We’re happy to announce that, to date, over 50 Micromax Android devices have been launched in the country with Opera Mini preinstalled on them. Many of these devices are also available in Russia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal.

Opera Mini on 50 Micromax Android devicesMicromax has recently overtaken Samsung to become the largest mobile phone supplier in India. Its handsets are marketed to highlight their innovative features and are priced to be easy on your pocket.

Here is a closer look at the top 10 Micromax devices used by Opera Mini users:
1.    Micromax A47 Bolt
2.    Micromax A24 Bolt
3.    Micromax A67 Bolt
4.    Micromax A114 Canvas 2.2
5.    Micromax A76 Canvas Fun
6.    Micromax A59 Bolt
7.    Micromax A94 Canvas MAd
8.    Micromax A61 Bolt
9.    Micromax A102 Canvas Doodle 3
10.    Micromax A58 Bolt
11.    Micromax A46 Bolt
12.    Micromax A177 Canvas Juice
13.    Micromax A36 Bolt
14.    Micromax A28 Bolt
15.    Micromax A120 Canvas 2 Colors

Now, Micromax has chosen to offer Opera Mini to all its users to give them a smooth browsing experience. If you are not on Micromax but are fed up with websites taking forever to load on your phone, then just head to m.opera.com, Google Play or the App Store and download Opera Mini right now.

 

#OperaCoastSurprise for iPhone and iPad users

Browsers have been around for 20 years and their conventions can get in the way of your browsing on touch-driven devices. Therefore, we custom-made the Opera Coast web browser for iPhone and iPad devices. It has been appreciated across the globe for its fresh look, design, intuitiveness, originality, unconventionality and functionality. Opera Coast is so refreshing that we feel it is one of the best apps to spend those precious fleeting moments that can make your day.

In the same spirit, we reached out to creative professionals in India who use iPhones or a iPads, with a unique #OperaCoastSurprise to introduce them to Opera Coast. Since creative people are well known to have cracked a big idea while wasting time instead of consciously working on it, we thought Opera Coast would be a great app for them to help them waste time well. We sent across a surprise package of kinetic sand along with the personal note to each professional. Kinetic sand has special properties that make the sand soft, stretchy and non-sticky, so you can make shapes with it on your desk without getting messy.

These professionals enjoyed the combination of kinetic sand and Opera Coast, and they showed their love on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. You can check out the #OperaCoastSurprise tag board to see some of their reactions from artists, illustrators, a psychological illusionist, a filmmaker, a blogger who writes on parenting and relationships, media & advertising professionals, undaunted entrepreneurs, musicians and many other inspired individuals who acknowledge our efforts.

Here is a video that captures the spirit of the #OperaCoastSurprise.

If you are a iPhone or iPad user, then download Opera Coast from the App Store or at operacoast.com and tell us what you think about it in the comments section below.

One lucky reviewer will get a sack of the uber-cool kinetc sand. Get ready for some playtime :)

Opera Mini helps Indians save ₹ 2.1 billion in data costs

At Opera, we understand how precious mobile data is for consumers, and that’s why we make sure our servers work very hard to shrink every bit of data possible for our users. This is especially important for the price conscious Indian market, where Opera Mini has its largest user base.

But, we decided, enough of our boasting about Opera Mini’s amazing compression technology, which shrinks data by 90% and reducing data costs. Let’s get down to business: numbers. And, here are the results:

  • A whopping Rs 2.1 billion rupees saved in just half the year
  • 75% less mobile data consumed by Opera Mini users
  • Nationwide saving of Rs 350 million / month

Small savings add up to big money
You will be amazed at how simply choosing the right technology can help you save money. And, in the case of Opera Mini, this data-saving technology is completely free. You just do what you do every day – surf the web on your mobile phone – and Opera Mini will save you money.

And, these daily savings can really add up in the long run. The 2.1 billion rupees that Opera Mini users in India saved over just half the year could be used for:

Here's what the 2.1 billion rupees saved by Opera Mini  Indian users in H12014 could be used for

Here’s what the 2.1 billion rupees saved by Opera Mini Indian users in H12014 could be used for

How we arrived at these beautiful numbers?

The short version…
(Uncompressed data – compressed data) x data cost = monthly savings
13,793,185 GB x Rs. 155* = Rs 2,137,943,675
*Average cost of 1GB data on a 2G network in India

And, here’s the long one…
From the 6 months of data between January to June 2014, we were able to determine the amount of data that was sent from the websites to Opera’s servers (uncompressed data) and the data that Opera sent to users’ phones (compressed data) after shrinking it. This gave us the total amount of data that Opera’s servers helped save users within the first six months: 13,793,185 GB. Then, to be fair, we used an average of 2G in data costs (@Rs 155) to calculate the minimum amount that users ended up saving. And, voilà, we ended up with that magical figure of 2.1 billion rupees.

For newbies, here’s the lowdown on Opera Mini and its data-saving technology:
Opera Mini’s advanced data-saving technology shrinks webpages down to as little as 10% of their original size, reducing data consumption by up to 90%. This data compression also helps render webpages faster, even while roaming, or in places with poor network conditions, making Opera Mini a great companion while on the go.

Opera Mini is compatible with over 3,000 mobile devices, ranging from basic Java phones to the latest Android and iOS smartphones.

Interested in saving money yourself?
Log on to m.opera.com or just head to any popular app store and download Opera Mini for free, today.