A year ago, we set out to explore what web browsers might look like in years to come. Now, you can try Opera Neon – a concept browser that gives you a glimpse into the future of desktop browsers.
Today’s web browsers are not as fresh as they used to be
At Opera, we have been building web browsers for more than 20 years. We are very aware that some parts of the web browsers we know today are nothing more than tributes to the last millennium – a time when the web was mostly made up of documents and pages. But the web is changing fast, and so are people’s expectations for how apps and web pages should behave.
Opera Neon is born
To bring our vision to life, we put together a team of talented developers and designers to work on a unique prototype browser. We created thousands of concepts, drawings, iterations, versions and interface designs.
Today, we can finally show you Opera Neon. It is a concept browser – an experimental browser that envisions the future of web browsers similar to the way concept cars predict the future of automobiles. Like the Opera browser, Opera Neon is built on top of the Blink engine, but unlike any other browser, Opera Neon has been built from scratch to bring you cool effects and animations without slowing down your experience.
What’s fun and fresh in Opera Neon?
Opera Neon is packed with fun ways to interact with web content, including the ability to drag and push things around, and to even pop content out of the web and save it.
Here are some new features you won’t have seen in a browser before:
- A new start page that uses your desktop wallpaper as its background.
- A sidebar with its own video player, image gallery and download manager.
- A vertical, visual tab bar on the right side of the browser window that makes it easier to distinguish between tabs.
- An intelligent system that automatically manages your tabs. Like gravity, frequently used tabs will float to the top, while less important tabs will sink to the bottom.
- A completely new omnibox that supports top search engines and open search.
We’ve also added new ways to enjoy web content:
- Video pop-out, which lets you play videos while you browse other web pages.
- Snap-to-gallery lets you snapshot and crop any part of a web page and save it to the gallery for later.
- Split screen mode lets you seamlessly view and interact with two pages at once.
It’s beautiful and it’s smart
Here’s how to manage bubble tabs:
- To open a new tab, click the plus icon on the left sidebar (the open tab will be highlighted).
- To add a favorite site to your tab bar, drag and drop the bubble there.
- To minimize a tab, click on the bubble or click the plus icon on the left sidebar.
- To close a tab, click on the x icon next to the bubble.
You’ll find several other icons on the left sidebar; one of these is the player icon. This gathers together tabs that are currently playing music and videos.
The camera icon on the left sidebar lets you to take a snapshot of the page, which then lands in your gallery under the landscape icon. You’ll find all your snaps there.
While Opera Neon has lots of new features – and many of the Opera browser features you know and love – there are some key features we have not included, such as our native ad-blocker, VPN and the ability to add extensions. The reason for this is simply that Opera Neon is a concept browser, built for experimentation and play.
A little something extra
Opera Neon wipes away your desktop clutter by bringing your computer’s wallpaper into the browser. Or, if you want to go full-Neon, we’ve collaborated with top graphic artist Luke Choice to create two free Neon-inspired wallpapers.
The future will be here sooner than you expect
Opera Neon is a concept browser – a vision of what browsers could become. It is not designed to replace the current Opera desktop browser. However, we do plan to incorporate some of its best new features into Opera for computers as early as spring 2017.
Jump in and play, then let us know what you think of Opera Neon!
Download Opera Neon
Opera Neon is now available for Mac and Windows. www.opera.com/neon