It's the dawn of a new era for Opera Software. The Scandinavian browser maker just finalized its Opera 15.0 browser, but more than just a version upgrade, this latest release is packing a brand new engine underneath the hood. Pop the top and you'll no longer find Presto working its magic, as Opera Software decided to switch to Google's Chromium-based Blink rendering engine, which is a fork of WebKit.
Performance based earn-out payments over the next three years could make this deal worth $155 million.
Opera Software today announced that it has acquired Skyfire Labs, a rival in the mobile browser space, in a deal that could be worth as much $155 million when all the checks are written. The Norwegian browser maker agreed to pay $50 million in cash and stocks upfront (including $8 million in cash on the Skyfire balance sheet), and will also make performance based earn-out payments over the next three years that could ultimately value the deal at $155 million.
Opera 12.10 dashes to the desktop today, and there are plenty of feature enhancements for both Windows and Mac users alike. Chief among them is basic touch support in Windows 8, so if you're rocking a touchscreen monitor, you can pinch-to-zoom the browser. Over in Apple's orchard, Opera 12.10 introduces support for "Retina" displays and plays nice with the Notification Center in the newest version of Mac OS X.
The Norwegian browser team over at Opera Software just finished putting the final touches on Opera 12, which sheds its beta digs and is now available to download as a stable release. Opera 12 features "sexier security" with an overhauled badge that makes it easier to see what websites are up to, such as trying to use your location information or flip on your webcam.
Google's Chrome team has reason to break out the bottles of champagne and fling corks through the office, something Dwight Schrute would never approve of. Why the celebration? Well, according to StatCounter, Chrome managed to unseat Internet Explorer to become the world's most used browser for the first time for a full calendar month in May. But if that's the case, why are corks flying in Microsoft's office as well?
Fresh off Facebook's acquisition of Instagram for a whopping $1.17 billion and following a lackluster initial public offering punctuated by more fizzle than sizzle, Mark Zuckerberg and company are reportedly interested in scooping up Opera Software, the Norwegian outfit behind the semi-popular Opera browser, and the only browser maker that puts out entertaining press releases.
Optionally, the latest version of Opera Software's online browser, Opera 12 (just released in beta form) is Opera like you've never seen it before. That's because Opera 12, or "Wahoo" if going by its codename, supports themes in case you want to change what's already a redesigned interface. From Cookie Monster to a cat wearing sunglasses, there are a bunch of themes to choose from, or you can create your own.
Opera Software developer Haavard Moen digitally penned a scathing blog post in which he stops just short of calling Apple an outright patent troll. Though he didn't use the term, he didn't pull any punches in exposing what he believes are Apple's attempts to use invalid or irrelevant patents or patent applications for the sole purpose of undermining open standards, something Apple has done before, according to Moen.
You're not likely to get away with installing a new browser on a loved one's PC this holiday season and calling it a gift, but hey, if you want to give it a shot, Opera Software says "a new browser is a gift that keeps on giving all year round." It just so happens Opera 11.6 is no longer bearing a beta tag and is ready for prime time. Should you bother to give it a spin?
Android users got first crack at Opera Software's Opera Mini 6.5 browser, which was released last week. It was the most successful Android Opera Mini release in history with millions of downloads to date, and now Opera Mini 6.5 arrives on iOS, Symbian, J2ME, and BlackBerry. The big new feature here is the ability to audit your data usage to help make sure you don't inadvertently bust out of your wireless carrier's data cap.