Today is an exciting day! This morning we are hosting a live launch event where we will unveil a surprise new version of our desktop browser and a brand new smartphone browser named Opera Touch. Both browsers have a new search feature we call Instant Search, and they are designed to work together in a new seamless way we’ve named Flow.
We gave this combined mobile and desktop release the codename R2. Following our Neon and Reborn releases, R2 is our third step in creating a new type of web browsers. We believe that Opera Touch and the new Opera for PCs together will truly change the way you surf the web.
Instant Search lets you search the web and find tabs quickly
Searching the web is something we all do numerous times every day. But when we started thinking about how we could make it better, we realized that to make a new search you needed to stop whatever you were doing and return to the address bar or open a new tab. This often led to distractions or fear of losing your current content. We wanted to develop a solution that would be quicker and distraction-free – it’s a new way of searching we’re certain you’ll love.
Instant Search opens a search box on top of the web site you are currently on and lets you look something else up. The current web site is dimmed while you are searching for something new. When you’re finished, just close Instant Search and you’ll resume with the web site you were on. Distraction avoided!
You can open Instant Search by pressing ALT + Space or by clicking the new magnifying glass icon in your Opera sidebar.
Instant Search also lets you find a tab lost among many
But that’s not everything Instant Search does for you. A quarter of the respondents we asked in our US survey said they usually have several tabs open in their browser and can’t seem to locate the exact one they would like to be working with. Based on this research and our own experiences, we decided to solve this common problem once and for all.
In order to find the tab that is tucked away out of sight, all you have to do is launch Instant Search (Alt + Space, remember?) and press the Tab key on your keyboard to transform your Instant Search into a tab search and then type in some keywords related to your missing tab. You can also enter Tab Search directly by pressing the Ctrl + Space shortcut. Looking up new stuff online and finding older tabs have never been easier.
Flow: mobile and desktop web become one
You might notice another new icon in Opera’s sidebar. This arrow-like button is Flow, our other new feature. Flow is actually pretty cool: it’s a thread for links, YouTube videos and other files that you want to save for later reference or to share with your mobile device, but not with other people.
Opera Touch: a new mobile browser from Opera
Remember, we have already mentioned we’re also launching a new mobile browser for Android (and soon also for iOS): Opera Touch. Opera Touch is designed to work together with your Opera desktop browser, regardless of your device manufacturer. Opening up to this experience actually requires a few steps from you, but bare with us and give it a try – you just might be blown away.
To begin, go to your Google Play store and download Opera Touch on your smartphone. Come back to your Opera browser for desktop and open Flow (the arrow icon). You then scan the QR code displayed on your computer screen with the new mobile app. That’s it, you’re all set.
We have mentioned Opera Touch here, but this is a desktop blog, so we will keep it brief. Opera Touch is a smartphone browser designed to be used on the move and with just one hand – even on large smartphones. You can read more about Opera Touch in our separate blog post.
Check out our launch event recording
This is a lot of news coming from one browser company in a day. To sum it up: we have launched a new version of our Opera PC browser and the brand new Opera Touch mobile browser today. They are a perfect pair and are best experienced together.
We hope you’ll enjoy our two new products just as much as we did creating them. You can also read about all their features and how they interact, as well as watch a recording of our live launch event here.
Here is the full changelog for the development of Opera 52