Opera for Android hits version 50

The feature-packed Norwegian browser features a publisher-friendly ad blocker

Oslo, Norway, 19 February, 2019 – Today, Opera announced the latest update of its acclaimed mobile browser, Opera for Android 50. The latest version of the mobile browser features a new version of its fast ad blocker, which now allows users to toggle it on or off per website. The latest Opera browser has a new picture-in-picture feature and an enhanced fast scroll handle.

Ad blockers in demand

According to a study from eMarketer, one-fifth of the U.S. population used an ad blocker in 2018. The eMarketer study also showed that people find ads to be too aggressive and annoying.

Another reason for choosing an ad blocker is for faster browsing, but today ad blockers also enable users to increase their online privacy by blocking tracking scripts and, in the case of Opera, protect against cryptojacking attacks and provide users with the ability to even block annoying cookie dialogs.

Opera for Android is a mobile browser powerhouse,” said Peter Wallman, SVP, Opera Browser for Android. “This browser gives you more control of the websites you visit than any other browser.”

Site-specific preference strikes a balance between users and publishers

In 2016, Opera became the first major browser to introduce a native ad blocker. The opt-in feature provides users the ability to block bad ads and scripts without the need to install any third party extensions or add-ons. With Opera 50, users of the popular browser can now disable the native ad blocker per website with just two taps.

“We want website publishers to be able to ask users to turn off their ad blocker for their websites,” said Wallman. “This enhancement to our ad blocker will allow users to benefit from having an ad blocker always on while disabling it on specific websites.”

The site-specific ad block option can be enabled from the search bar of the browser. Users can tap on the green lock located at the left side of the website address which will display a window with site settings in which users can choose to exclude a website from ad blocking.

Cryptojacking and cookie blocking

Over the last year, Opera introduced multiple features to its ad blocker. These features included cryptocurrency mining protection and a cookie dialog blocker.

The cryptocurrency mining protection activates by default when enabling the ad blocker on Opera For Android and keeps users safe from cryptojacking on their Android mobile devices. The cookie dialog blocker was introduced at the end of last year to free users from annoying cookie and privacy dialogs shown on websites, giving users the option to eliminate the vast majority of them.

Picture in picture

Additionally, Opera for Android also introduced picture-in-picture (PIP) support for videos which gives users an uninterrupted video experience while browsing. With this addition, users can keep watching videos on their favorite websites while using other apps.

The feature is enabled by default in the browser and can be accessed when a user expands a video to full screen. After doing this, users will need to tap on the home button of their device. This will minimize the Opera browser but keep the video playing in a smaller window which can be moved around the screen of the device, allowing users to continue managing other apps simultaneously.

To go back to full screen video, users need to double tap the window or tap on the enlarge icon located on the top right of the window. The feature works on all websites that support PIP videos.

Enhanced fast page scroller handle

Finally, the browser also added a scroll handle that acts as Opera’s quick jump tool. This facilitates quick navigation for users in websites with long formats, making it easier and faster than ever to reach the information they are searching for on a website.

In December 2018, the Opera for Android browser became the world’s first Web 3-ready browser with its built-in Crypto Wallet. This allows users to browse and make transactions on the blockchain-based Web of tomorrow.

Available for download

Opera is available for download in Google Play.

About Opera
Founded in 1995 in Norway, Opera delivers browsers and AI-driven content delivery solutions to 320 million people worldwide. On December 13, it introduced the first blockchain-ready browser. Opera is listed on Nasdaq under the OPRA ticker symbol.