Software-maker Opera has announced the launch of its latest eponymous browser build, promising improved privacy features, better convenience, and more competitive synchronisation capabilities.
Available for Windows, Linux, and OS X, Opera 32 is claimed to be the company's biggest release yet. Prime amongst its new features is boosted privacy thanks to a tie-in with SurfEasy, a virtual private network (VPN) service conveniently owned by Opera. When a user opens a private window or clicks the security badge in the browser's address bar, they will be offered a link to download SurfEasy for the platform of their choice - a less-than-altruistic gesture given the subscription-based nature of the service, although Opera does offer a free-use tier limited to 500MB of data per month.
The latest release of the browser also bolsters its synchronisation functionality, in order to better compete with rival Google's Chrome browser. In Opera 32, as well as the existing ability to synchronise tabs, bookmarks, and other browser data between systems, users can opt-in to synchronise their passwords - suitably encrypted before upload, naturally - too. A new tree view mode for the bookmark view also debuts in this release, along with the option to install animated themes for the browser's Speed Dial screen.
Opera was one of the last browser manufacturers to stop charging for its software, switching away from its ad-supported freemium model in 2005. In 2013, the company surprisingly dropped its Presto rendering engine in favour of using the WebKit engine from Google's open-source Chromium browser project. While its market share has been recovering of late, it still remains a bit-player in the browser market with around five per cent share.
Opera 32 is available to download now from the official website