Opera Releases 10.00 Beta With Spiffy New Features
With Google Chrome nipping at the heels of other open source browsers, it's not surprising to see developers ramping up efforts to get a new version of Opera out the door. Version 10.00 Beta 1 of Opera was released last week with a bunch of nifty new features, upgrades, and performance improvements. Though Opera is most notable for its snappy mobile browser, its new desktop version is nothing to sneeze at.
Speed Dial, a longtime favorite feature of mine that pops open a screen with thumbnail images of your favorite Web sites, is now fully customizable. Now, in addition to being able to choose which sites show up in thumbnails, you can also add a custom background of your choice.
Speaking of thumbnails, Visual Tabs shows small images of open Web pages when you resize tabs to make them bigger. It's a nice touch for people who keep dozens of tabs open at a time and want to navigate with a glance, not dozens of clicks.
I'm particularly fond of Opera's intergrated Web mail feature that makes managing email from the browser dead simple.
Opera 10 also sports some additional tweaks like a resizable search field, inline spell checker, and a quicker engine under the hood. If you're unlucky enough to be on a dial-up connection, Opera 10 will be your best friend. It's Turbo feature uses technology that compresses data so it moves swiftly over limited-bandwith connections.