Opera update adds free VPN, built-in ad blocker to ChromeOS browser

The browser claims to be the first to be fully optimised for ChromeOS since the operating system launched in 2011

Opera's Chromebook web browser alternative

Opera has released a host of new features for its Chromebook web browser to position itself as a full-featured alternative to Chrome that's also fully optimised for ChromeOS.

The new web browser boasts tools that are not available in the standard Chrome OS, such as a free browser VPN, built-in messengers, an ad blocker, and five different colour themes.

Opera suggests that its tweaked Android version is a simple and fast laptop browser, with "custom-made optimisations that deliver a full-fledged laptop experience". The major changes will allow users more 'laptop-style' controls, including keyboard shortcuts such as 'Ctrl+T' for opening new tabs and 'Ctrl+L' for focusing the address bar.

What's more, Opera suggests it has developed the only browser that lets users access chat functions without disrupting their work or the browser itself. Apps for Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Twitter, WhatsApp, and Telegram are built-in, so users won't have to reach for a phone or specifically go to the website of each service.

Dark mode on Opera's new Chrome web browser

The decision to develop an alternative for Chrome was largely based on a study conducted by Opera that found users wanted more than one browser, particularly for different purposes. Opera claims to be the first company to provide an alternative browser to Chrome that's optimised for ChromeOS, since the operating system launched back in 2011.

"Chromebooks, with their user-friendly interface and touchscreens, are excellent devices for people's everyday needs," said Stefan Stjernelund, product manager of Opera for Android. "We decided it's high time their users got access to an excellent alternative browser with a unique set of features they'll find both useful and fun."

Related Resource

How to maximise the value of your data and apps with IaaS

Free yourself from infrastructure complexity

Free yourself from infrastructure complexity - white words against a green background - whitepaper from OracleDownload now

The timing is also key, with Chromebook demand reaching an all-time high during the pandemic; according to Canalys, 11.2 million units were shipped between October and December 2020, which represents a 287% increase year-on-year. According to Opera, this highlights how important Chrome OS has become as it offers convenience for workers and students alike.

The Norwegian firm also expects a further 40 million units to be shipped during 2021.

Featured Resources

Modern governance: The how-to guide

Equipping organisations with the right tools for business resilience

Free Download

Cloud operational excellence

Everything you need to know about optimising your cloud operations

Watch now

A buyer’s guide to board management software

How the right software can improve your board’s performance

The real world business value of Oracle autonomous data warehouse

Lead with a 417% five-year ROI

Download now

Recommended

Google banned from importing patent-infringing tech following Sonos IP victory
Policy & legislation

Google banned from importing patent-infringing tech following Sonos IP victory

7 Jan 2022
Google, Facebook fined €210 million for making it difficult for users to reject cookies
Policy & legislation

Google, Facebook fined €210 million for making it difficult for users to reject cookies

6 Jan 2022
Google is working with leading PC manufacturers to improve Android on Windows
Google Android

Google is working with leading PC manufacturers to improve Android on Windows

6 Jan 2022
Google Cloud acquires Israeli security startup Siemplify
cloud security

Google Cloud acquires Israeli security startup Siemplify

5 Jan 2022

Most Popular

How to boot Windows 11 in Safe Mode
Microsoft Windows

How to boot Windows 11 in Safe Mode

6 Jan 2022
How to speed up Windows 11
Microsoft Windows

How to speed up Windows 11

7 Jan 2022
Dell XPS 15 (2021) review: The best just got better
Laptops

Dell XPS 15 (2021) review: The best just got better

14 Jan 2022