Opera is by no means a new browser. It’s been around for over 20 years and has built a loyal user base.
After reviewing the browser and testing some of the new features, I’m surprised that it isn’t more popular. It’s built using Google’s Chromium, which means you can personalize the browser with tons of add-ons. It also has a built-in VPN and it allows you to easily send notes, files, links, pictures, and more to your phone with the Flow feature. You can read more about these features and more in the review below.
It’s by no means perfect, but I don’t see any reason not to download and start using it today.
How to Download the Opera Browser
- Click on the DOWNLOAD button on the sidebar to jump directly to the Opera download page.
- Click on the DOWNLOAD NOW button and the file will download to your computer.
- Double click on the file and click INSTALL to run the installer program.
- That’s all there is to it! Opera is now installed on your computer and you can start using it right away.
How to Uninstall Opera From Windows
If you’re not satisfied with Opera, it’s really easy to completely remove it from your Windows computer.
- Type Add or Remove Programs in the Windows search bar.
- Scroll down to Opera and click Uninstall.
- The Opera installer will open and ask if you’re really sure that you want to remove the browser. Click UNINSTALL and another pop-up will open and ask if you really want to leave Opera. Click YES, and the program will immediately uninstall.
Opera Browser Review
As far as popularity goes, Opera is generally considered a second-tier browser, beneath Chrome, Firefox, and Explorer/Edge.
I’m not sure why Opera hasn’t been able to reach that upper level, it has name recognition, great features, and was even the original developer of some of the standard features that we take for granted in other browsers.
Interestingly, even with a free built-in VPN, Opera is a little weak when it comes to privacy. This is mostly because they were bought by a Chinese tech company in 2016, that has a questionable reputation, to say the least.
Built-In Opera Browser Features
- Privacy Protection – This is quickly becoming a standard browser feature, but it’s still good to see that Opera has the option to block ads and ad trackers without having to download other plugins or add-ons.
- VPN – Activate the VPN by clicking the Settings gearwheel > scroll down to Advanced Settings > Scroll down to VPN and turn it on. By default, when you visit Google, Bing, or any other search engine you set as your default, it will bypass the VPN so you’ll still get local results. But you can change the settings so that you’ll remain anonymous even when using a search engine.
Once you activate the VPN, a little VPN icon will be added right next to the address bar. Click on the icon to turn on the VPN. While the VPN is on, Opera won’t be able to collect any of your personal data, see what websites you visit, or have your true IP address. It’s certainly not a bad option for a free VPN, although there are better options out there. Unlike a premium VPN, you won’t be able to choose a specific location, let alone a country. There are just 4 server options to choose from and you get connected to a server somewhere in that geographic region.
- Optimal Server (server closest to your real location)
- My Flow: As someone who routinely sends emails with links, screenshots, pictures, and other files to my own email address, the My Flow feature is a real game-changer. You will need to download the Opera Touch mobile app and sync it to your browser by either scanning a QR or entering a 25 digit code. Once they’re connected, you can easily send links, pictures, files, and more from your browser to your phone. Click on the My Flow arrow icon on the sidebar to open the window. Now you can type messages and upload files and they will instantly be available on your phone. To open My Flow on your phone, click on the Opera logo on the bottom right corner and choose My Flow from the options.
- Messenger apps in the sidebar: Quickly access your WhatsApp and Facebook messages directly from the sidebar. You can also add Telegram and VK messages by putting your mouse over the sidebar and right-clicking it. This will allow you to personalize the apps.
- Video pop-out: If you’ve ever watched a video and wanted to go to other pages at the same time, you’ll love this feature. Forget waiting for the video to end, or opening a second browser window so you can have the video playing in one while browsing in a separate one. Opera not only lets you detach the video, but it will allow you to open another tab and it will overlay the video there.
- Screenshot tool: The screenshot tool can be found at the end of the URL address bar. Just click on it to take a screenshot of whatever is visible on the page. After you take the screenshot, an editing box will open, allowing you to crop, add text, arrows, or make other adjustments.
Does the Opera VPN Bypass the Netflix Proxy Error?
I’ve tested and reviewed more than 50 VPNs for WizCase, and none of them have confused me as much as the Opera VPN. There are 4 server options to connect with Europe, the Americas, Asia, and the Optimal Server.
I connected to the Americas server, having no idea if this will connect me to the US, Canada, or South America. The first thing I did was check my IP Address, which came back as being in a city in Virginia, USA. Next, I went to Netflix but instead of getting the US version of Netflix, I was somehow in Swedish Netflix. The good news was that even with the VPN on, I was able to watch Netflix so it does bypass the Netflix proxy error, just not in the location I wanted. Next, I went to Hulu, with no real expectations, since it seemed I was in Sweden. But, to my surprise, I was able to watch without any issues.
Alternatives to Opera
- Chrome: The most popular browser in the world is fast, secure, and has a huge library of plugins that can take your browsing experience to the next level. Some of the great features include syncing across multiple devices, importing your bookmarks and plugins, plus a secure password manager.
- Firefox: With a focus on security, Firefox’s popularity is on the rise. The browser has a fast load time and great tools, like Pocket, Send, and built-in PDF reader. It’s one of the few browsers that doesn’t rely on Google’s Chromium code.
- Explorer/Edge: Internet Explorer is the much-maligned browser from Microsft that comes with all Windows computers. There have been some great improvements to the browser since Microsoft dropped Explorer and released Edge.
Q. Is Opera safe to download?
A. Opera is a safe browser to use and download. There are no known viruses or malware that are associated with it.
Q. How do I turn on Private browsing with Opera?
A. There are 2 ways to access Opera’s Private browsing. You can press CTRL+SHIFT+N to instantly open a new private browsing window, or open the menu by clicking the Opera logo on the top left corner of the page and select “New Private Window”.
Q. Is the VPN really secure?
A. There is always a risk when using a free VPN and Opera is no different. But while it doesn’t have the same benefits of a premium VPN, it will keep your browsing data anonymous.
Q. Can I add plugins to my Opera browser?
A. Opera is built using Google’s Chromium, which allows for plugins and addons that will improve your browsing experience.
Q. Does Opera have an ad-blocker?
A. Yes, you can turn on the ad-blocker by clicking the Hamburger menu button and scrolling down to the Privacy & Security section. There you’ll be able to turn on ad and tracker blocking.
Q. What is Opera’s Turbo mode?
A. Opera Turbo is a compression technology that you can turn on to help speed up the load time for websites. Opera will identify the heavier elements on the page and compress them, so they won’t take as long to load.Opera Review