What Is Going On At Opera Software? Battery Life And VPN Shenanigans


Things have all been a bit strange at Opera, the Norwegian company home to the third-party browser which has brought some interesting innovation in the past.

Earlier in the year the company reported that it had received a takeover bid from a Chinese consortium and subsequently has been in the news for two decidedly questionable claims. Firstly the offer of a free browser VPN and now a new battery saving mode that claims to boost laptop battery life by 50%.

The first was proven to be little more than a proxy service, which may or may not get you around geo-blocking but certainly doesn't offer any real level of security.

The second claims sounds wildly optimistic and would need to be thoroughly justified by independent tests before it can claim any credibility.

It's interesting that Opera chose Chrome for its head to head, because I've found that Chrome has become less secure and less usable over the last few years, mostly as a result of Google's attempts to drag all kinds of non-browser functionality into the browser. Certainly I've not used it on either Windows or Mac for a while now.

As unimpressed as I am with more recent versions of Chrome it seems highly unlikely that Opera will be able to demonstrate such massive battery life improvements in a like for like test.

So are these strangely uncharacteristic claims part of Opera's plan to keep its potential buyer interested, or does the company believe that it can use hyperbole to boost the profile of its products?

Shame really, because for the most part Opera is a tidy browser and its mobile products introduced us to the concept of on the fly data compression.

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