By Kevin Yank

Opera goes free without ads

By Kevin Yank

After Opera’s 10th anniversary registration code giveaway, I suspected Opera’s registration fee wouldn’t last much longer. From the Tech Times #121:

With these kinds of stunts coming from Opera at a dizzying rate, I suspect the company plans to position its flagship browser as a promotional tool for its (more profitable?) embedded product versions, such as the recently-announced Opera Mini, which it is marketing to mobile phone service providers, rather than end users.

It looks like I was right on the money. As of today, Opera is a free (as in beer) browser. Step right up.

  • So, what’s going on with them? One week it’s free for a day…now it’s free? Next week they’ll put them back in… are they desparate for users?

  • smith288

    I imagine it has something to do with the last pay to play browser out there as everyone else seems to be giving theirs away.

    Perhaps Opera has found a niche in mobile units for their major source of income?

  • I think that the free codes for a day was a stepping stone to the full free version. It just allowed for them to see reaction and such.

    It also generated double the press. ;)

  • chris ward

    free beer? where?

  • Thats true, I was just about to give up on Opera intil I received my key.
    A good PR stunt it was too!

  • Well its nice that its free now, but I’ll still only use it to test websites on. They are going to have to give me a significant reason before I’ll stop using Mozilla as my main browser.

  • pulphero

    Well, if you can’t sell it, give it away for free. But free or not, I don’t see any compelling need for an Opera browser. I’m not sure what value it adds, and even as a free product, I doubt many who don’t currently use it will now adopt it as their main browser. Since Opera is never going to be serious competition for Firefox or IE, it does make sense to turn it into a loss-leader for other products made by the same company – which I assume is the plan.

  • Opera is a great browser, I’d suggest everyone try it out. I’m not saying you should stop using Firefox, but taking Opera for a testdrive should give most people to Firefox a pleasant experience. If Opera can continue to convert IE users in Europe, it’s a good thing for the web ;)

  • Firefox was always free and adfree!

  • jpatterson

    Just because it hasn’t always been free doesn’t automatically make it worse than those that were. Maybe they just suddenly decided ‘Wow! Free is cool nowadays – lets do that!’ – I doubt it but you never know!

  • Who cares if FF has always been free? It really doesn’t matter. M$ has always been there (well in the computer realm) but they’re dying now! :D

  • jpatterson

    i agree charmedlover. Price doesn’t define how good a programme is.

  • A Guy

    Opera was the only browser that I was actually prepared to pay for because it had so many essential features. I wouldn’t have paid a dime for Fire Fox because it simply couldn’t do everything that Opera can and has done for years.

    And before anyone tells me that Fire Fox has hundreds of plug-ins available that replicate everything that’s built into Opera, I say who wants to spend hours hunting for and downloading all those plug-ins just to get the same functionality that Opera provides out of the box? Not me!

    And wasn’t there a major fiasco a while back when a new version of Fire Fox came out and all of a sudden all the plug-ins stopped working?

  • chris ward

    such a move is good for developers in the long term.

    more innovation in the market breeds innovation, and so we avoid another period of stagnation.

    it’s because of feeds,AJAX with standards support in browsers that things are moving forward today!

    and from the quick glance so far, opera seems to have more features than the fox!

    really loving these mouse gestures (right click and drag) :)

  • chris ward

    sorry, i meant it’s because of the browsers, that new innovations are happening on the web, hence web 2.0

  • sadisynn

    I’ll say it again, as I have in the past… Opera works on Windows 95 where the others don’t. I also got it for Mac OS9, and IBM OS/2. And I’ve made use of the ads in the past. Off hand, I’d say the reason for going free is due to the phenomenal success of millions of satisfied paying customers. I was about to fork over money when this free thing hit my email. Still a good idea to donate, they’re the greatest! Read the CERT bulletins, Opera has the least bugs, period.

  • They are going to have to give me a significant reason before I’ll stop using Mozilla as my main browser.

    I used to think the same way, too. Then I switched from Windows XP to Linux and Mozilla rendered fonts like cr*p. Opera, OTOH, rendered them beautifully.

    That was my significant reason. I switched to Opera, gave it a fair chance, and was hooked. Haven’t looked back since. Now that it’s ad free it’s even better, but honestly, the tiny text ads didn’t bother me.

    You need 20-30 extensions to make Firefox do what Opera does out of the box. The only Mozilla thing I miss is the DOM Inspector, but I have a ‘View in FF’ button in my Opera that will open the page in Firefox, and then i just hit Ctrl+Shift+I to get the DOM Inspector. Easy. :)

  • Opera is very good, and it’s about time they “went free”. It renders web pages really good nowadays (I remember version 4 and 5…) The caching behaviour is annoying though until you get used to it.

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