Opera 10 Web browser

Opera has always been packed with features, but it has yet to garner the same kind of publicity that Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Chrome enjoy.

Opera has always been packed with features, but it has yet to garner the same kind of publicity that Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Chrome enjoy. And that's a shame, because version 10 of the venerable Web browser adds a slew of clever features that anyone who surfs the Web will welcome.

Like previous versions, Opera 10 is fast, configurable, and clean-looking--and it offers just about everything you'd expect in a modern browser, including a pop-up blocker, plug-ins, an RSS reader, and an antiphishing tool. Unlike competing browsers, it also has a surprisingly good built-in e-mail client, with support for POP3 and IMAP servers, the ability to create incoming message rules, and a spam filter. And, once again in this version, Opera bristles with features too numerous to mention in this short review, yet it packs them all into an elegant, simple-to-use interface.

The new features don't clutter up the browser or make it more difficult to use. Overall, Opera 10 is sleeker-looking than previous versions. But Opera's added beauty is more than skin-deep. Tab handling, for example, has improved, in that you can now configure the browser so that thumbnails of all of your tabs appear above each tab; the thumbnails are resizable as well.

Another worthy addition is the new Speed Dial feature (pictured above). Speed Dial improves on Safari 4's similar Top Sites feature by virtue of being more configurable. You can customize the page that appears whenever you open a new tab in Opera so that anywhere from 4 to 24 of your favorite Web sites display as thumbnails. That way, you can more quickly get to the sites you visit most often, with a simple click on a thumbnail. The feature is turned on by default, and the settings seem to offer no way to turn it off--not that you'd want to, though, because it has no downside.

Opera has always displayed pages quickly, and the newest version is even speedier, particularly on interactive sites that use a lot of resources, such as Facebook and Gmail. Opera claims a 40 percent increase in speed, but we couldn't verify that

Among other new features are an inline spelling checker (which will be particularly welcome to bloggers) and Opera Turbo, a compression technology that Opera says will allow you to surf faster on slow connections, such as via dial-up. As a broadband user, I was not able to test this feature, so I can't vouch for it.

Surprisingly, given how many features Opera has, it still lacks one feature that IE, Firefox, and Chrome all have: a privacy mode that makes all traces of your Web-surfing session vanish after you close the browser. If such a feature is important to you, Opera isn't the best choice.

Should you replace your current browser with Opera? Which browser you use is a personal decision, so we can't give a one-size-fits-all answer. But anyone who has ever wished that their browser were faster and more feature-packed will certainly want to give Opera 10 a try.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags operaweb browsersbrowsers

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Preston Gralla

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?