With version 55 of Opera for Android, we’re continuing to improve your visual experience. This time we are diving into darkness with a completely revamped night mode, providing you with a more pleasant experience when you simply cannot let go of your device at night. Furthermore, we have managed to squeeze in some exciting improvements for your personal newsfeed, along with some other small tweaks.
A new night mode
Opera for Android has had long standing support for night mode, enabling you to darken the UI far beyond the limits of your device. With version 55, we have reimplemented this feature from scratch to give you the most fully-featured and configurable night mode you could ever wish for.
When researching how to create the ultimate night mode, we identified a number of relevant components. Each aspect, in its own way, improves the user experience with night-time browsing:
Most of today’s devices have automatic brightness settings which adapt to the current lighting conditions. However, these are typically not enough if you are trying to not disturb someone close to you in a very dark room. Opera’s additional dimming setting gives you the option to go super-dark, minimizing your light pollution. Although already present in previous versions of our night mode, it has been reimplemented in this version to work perfectly with our new color temperature setting. In addition, this version eliminates the need for special device overlay permissions.
Blue light is a known destroyer of good sleep. By suppressing the melatonin levels, it disturbs the natural circadian rhythm of the body. As a result, you may still find yourself involuntarily awake after putting down your device at night. By adjusting the color temperature (suppressing the blue light components), we can limit the effects of late night browsing, making it easier to relax and fall asleep. Use the color temperature slider to find your own balance between picture-perfect and relaxing.
Dark theme and dark web pages
Introduced in version 54, you may select a light or dark theme for the UI along with the color options. A simple way to decrease the light emitted by the device is to use the dark theme, which night mode can now activate automatically.
We are now taking this one step further by introducing the dark web pages feature. Naturally, we support dark mode CSS for the relatively few web pages that provide it. However, with dark web pages, we have also put major effort into applying clever CSS changes to web pages without such support to make your night-time browsing even darker. In combination with the dark theme and additional dimming, you can now browse with a minimal emission of light.
When using night mode, we recommend using a dark virtual keyboard on your device. However, if you are unable or would rather not do so, we have the option of reducing the effects of a bright keyboard by dimming it down with the use of a special overlay.
Finally, it’s easy to lose track of time and forget about engaging night mode, so we have introduced support for automatic scheduling. Pick your own times, or let the device follow the natural rhythm of the day by automatically adapting to the sunset/sunrise times in your region. With this you can always feel more relaxed once it’s time to put down your device for the night.
On the news side, we have made many improvements to both the content and visuals. We’ve added support for a new range of countries and languages, along with RTL support. On tablets, we now use a two-column layout in landscape mode to make better use of the available space.
Quick tab switching
A common request we’ve received has been for a quick way to switch tabs without going into the tab gallery. In response to these requests, we have introduced the ability to quickly flip between tabs by swiping the bottom bar.
Other small tweaks
As always, there are other various stability fixes and improvements that don’t quite make it into a blog post, but which do play their small parts in enriching your everyday browsing experience. Something worth a quick mention is that we have ensured complete support for Android 10.
That’s all until next time. We hope that you enjoy the new Opera for Android. Happy browsing!
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