We had put the pre-alpha build through its paces and had found it to be remarkably fast. Opera has published a bunch of test results, which reinforces Carakan’s swiftness. Opera outperformed Firefox 3.6 and Internet Explorer 8 in every benchmark and was defeated by Chrome only in the V8 test(developed by Google).
Opera 10.5 also brings to the table an impressive set of new features and improvements. The major highlights of this release are:
- Private Browsing: Evenes not only incorporates Private Browsing, which has become a common feature in modern browsers, but also takes it to the next level by adding Private Tabs. Any browsing activity performed in a Private Window/Tab is not remembered.
- Windows 7 Support: Opera 10.5 integrates tightly with Windows 7 and supports taskbar tabs as well as jumplists.
- Refined Skin: Evenes takes full advantage of Aero effects and merges the menu bar with the title bar to conserve space. There are numerous user interface tweaks all around. Dialogue boxes now appear as page overlays and Find In Page has been improved to make it easier to spot what you want.
- Improved Widgets: Widgets in Opera 10.5 are installed as independent applications and can be used even when Opera is not running.
- HTML5 Video Playback: Opera for Windows supports native video playback using the open source Ogg Theora codec.
Although development for Windows has been prioritized, Opera hasn’t ignored Mac and UNIX users. Development for these platforms is well into the alpha stage and new builds are available for both Mac and UNIX. However, don’t forget to go through the list of known issues before downloading Opera 10.5 for Mac and UNIX.
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