The Challenger Browser Battling against Default Complacency

December 4, 2023 at 9:00 AM EST

Since 1995 Opera has won over hundreds of millions of users worldwide thanks to the company’s relentless drive to innovate. Having pioneered numerous features that have become industry-standards – such as a built-in free VPN or the integration of AI tools – Opera continues to be the preferred choice for users who are ready to break free from pre-installed browsers. With a unique blend of speed, security, and customizability, Opera continues to lead the way against the defaults – an alternative for all of us out there who deserve a better browser.


Opera’s main priority has always been putting the user in charge of their browsing – empowering individuality and flair so that surfing the web can be done in one’s own particular style. Custom themes and wallpapers let users feel immediately at home, their backgrounds as unique as they are. From the sidebar users can then access their favorite messengers and social media apps, such as WhatsApp, Instagram, and TikTok, seamlessly interacting with the communities that matter most to them.

Gamers already know how intently Opera focuses on what animates users most, with the company’s well-loved gaming browser, Opera GX, having grown exponentially since its launch almost 5 years ago. With custom specifications tailored to gamers’ needs – such as RAM limiters, integrations with Twitch and Discord, and a Gaming Corner – Opera GX has staked out its niche as the only browser for gamers, having racked up a loyal – and growing – community of over 26 million users worldwide.

While Opera may not build full-blown browsers for every constituency, the company is increasingly tapping into new user bases with audience configurations – special, custom-built versions of the browser. In collaboration with, for example, Opera recently built the world’s first chess browser. And a constant stream of new features cater to the passions of Opera users, such as integrated Live Scores, which allow football fans to follow over 8,000 teams from around the world. With in-depth statistics and commentary, fans never have to miss any of the action from their favorite teams and leagues.

Privacy and security

Opera’s commitment to privacy and security has been a cornerstone since the company’s inception. Opera’s well-known – and free – built-in ad and tracker blockers are one element of a comprehensive package of features designed to maximize user privacy. The ad blocker is an efficient tool that provides users with a seamless and ad-free browsing experience. It not only blocks intrusive advertisements but also speeds up webpage loading times, up to 90% faster,

enhancing overall browsing efficiency. Opera's ad blocker also offers customizable settings, allowing users to tailor their ad-blocking preferences to suit their individual needs, whether for complete ad removal or for allowing non-intrusive ads.

Having pioneered a free, built-in VPN, Opera then became the first major browser-maker to deliver both free and VPN Pro options across all major platforms, including Mac, Windows, Linux, Android, and iOS. Whether free or Pro, Opera’s VPNs are no-log services, meaning the VPN does not collect any personal data or information related to users’ browsing history or originating network address. User anonymity is therefore secure, while virtual locations around the world ensure instant access to speedy connections. 

Opera additionally offers a suite of other services that prioritize user privacy and security, such as a Cookie Dialogue Blocker, Cryptojacking Protection, and Apple Intelligent Tracking Prevention for users on iOS. Moreover, users can access native built-in non-custodial cryptowallet to manage their digital assets with ease and security.

Innovation and speed

Opera has constantly positioned itself at the forefront of browser innovation. An early adopter of AIGC, Opera partnered with OpenAI at the beginning of 2023 to lead the pack into the AI-driven browsing future. Pioneering in-browser solutions such as AI Prompts and sidebar integrations with GPT models, Opera then became the first browser to offer its own native AI tool: Aria.

Free and equipped with up-to-date information from around the web, Aria quickly set the standard for AI tools. Both a web and a browser expert, Aria allows users to collaborate with AI while looking for information on the web, generating text or code, or getting their product queries answered. Aria has been steadily upgraded as Opera’s developers have masterminded new use cases, most recently adding new abilities to refine queries as well as the power to draft numerous types of text – even in the unique flourish of the user, with “My Style.”

Aria was embedded into Opera’s rebranded flagship browser, Opera One. Built on an AI engine and with plenty of room to scale over time, Opera One promises an intuitive browsing experience that responds to the users’ needs. Tab Islands – an ingenious new approach to tab management – typifies this approach, as tabs are grouped according to context, with Islands collapsible and expandable at the click of a button.

Such user-friendly UI is engrained in Opera’s products, with users agreeing that speed and flexibility are hallmarks of the company’s platforms. From the moment users open the browser – courtesy of a customizable start page and sidebar – they’re able to jump into their favorite sites from around the web in just a few clicks. Bookmarks, Speed Dials, and Workspaces all empower users to quickly hop back and forth between the sites and tools that matter most, optimizing efficiency while tailoring the browser to their own individual needs.

Opera combines a blend of features, each of which alone dwarfs the capabilities of a standard, boring default browser: blazing speed, powerful privacy and security, and a passion for letting loose user creativity and freedom. The company’s user-centric approach has won it hundreds of millions of loyal fans from around the world who are consistently thrilled by innovations and updates that pre-installed competitors would hardly dream of. For those who dare to browse better, Opera stands alone.