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How Opera is different from Chrome and why you should try it

How Opera is different from Chrome and why you should try it
Fabrizio Ferri-Benedetti

Fabrizio Ferri-Benedetti

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Chrome and Opera have shared the same Blink engine since 2013 so they both load web pages in the same way.

So if they use the same technology, why should you choose Opera over Chrome? The answer is because they are different in terms of features and appearance. Here I will show you what makes Opera unique.

Opera has a more classic and more intuitive design

There are many small differences between Opera and Chrome in terms of interface details. The first and most obvious one is the position of the menu. While Chrome’s menu is found on the right of the address bar, Opera’s menu button is located on the left where it’s much more accessible and familiar.

Similar but not the same: Opera takes on a less abstract and more classic appearance.

Opera’s themes are distinct. They use images and apply them to the configuration and options screens. They are also easier to create than in Chrome. All you do is simply select a photo on your hard drive, adjust the alignment, and set the color of the background text. It is just like setting a wallpaper in Windows or Mac.

Creating a theme for Opera is as easy as uploading an image from your hard drive.

Another notable difference is the Speed Dial new tab page, which in Opera is more attractive and customizable than other browsers. The thumbnails are larger and the customized background is more visible. The default homepage is also much nicer in than Google Chrome.

The speed dial in Opera is larger, more beautiful and more customizable.

Opera incorporates Stash and Discover features

Two unique features of Opera’s Speed Dial are the Stash and Discover functions. Stash is like an inbox for temporary favorite pages, it saves the web pages you mark with the heart button so you can come back and read them later. It’s like having the Pocket app integrated into your browser, with no need for any additional extensions.

Would you like to read this page later without having to put it in your favorites? Add it to Stash.

The Discover feature provides you with a selection of news from various sources, which is ideal if you enjoy interesting articles and like to keep up to date with news. It has all the typical categories (business, health, sports, technology) and uses infinite scroll, which means that when you get in the end it just keeps loading more content.

Discover is like having a newspaper for your browser’s home page.

Opera uses Opera Turbo for quicker browsing

With slow connections, Opera Turbo is a blessing. Turbo is sends pages through Opera’s servers which compress the images along with other files. This results in a much lighter and quicker browsing experience by as much as 80%, and with minimal loss of quality.

Here is the icon that indicates that Opera Turbo is enabled on your PC or Mac.

Opera has multiple search suggestions

When searching with the address bar, Opera – like Chrome – displays tabs to search with multiple search engines. In addition to Google, Opera also features Yahoo!, Amazon, Bing, and other search engines. You can save time with this little feature if you are someone who likes to search and compare results.

Just one click and you can see search suggestions from Yahoo!, Bing, or Wikipedia.

It uses less memory than Google Chrome

In our web browser comparison, Opera demonstrated power equal to that of Chrome. It makes sense seeing as they both use the same engine. However the incredible thing is that Opera consumes less memory:

Opera handles memory much better than Chrome; second only to Firefox.

We’re not sure what kind of optimizations Opera has applied to the Blink engine, but one thing for sure is that the results have been very successful: the way Opera incorporates memory management makes it better than Chrome for those with less powerful computers.

For those who want the power of Chrome without committing to Google

When using Opera, you get the feeling of using a neutral browser that doesn’t favor any of the major corporations. In this sense, Opera is a lot like Firefox, except that it uses the  high-performance engine as Chrome, which in our comparison has proved ideal for opening large websites.

The only reason to choose Chrome over Opera is for its integration with Google services. But if you want to keep using extensions and Chrome technology without the obligation of creating a Google account, Opera is definitely a more interesting option than Firefox.

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Originally published in Spanish on Softonic ES.

Follow me on Twitter: @remoquete

Fabrizio Ferri-Benedetti

Fabrizio Ferri-Benedetti

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