opera

IETF standardizes Opus for flexible online audio

The Internet Engineering Task Force has standardized the Opus audio compression technology as RFC 6716.

The move paves the way for much broader use of Opus for anything from playing music to online voice chats. Opus is what's called a codec because it defines how to encode and decode a stream of data for more efficient storage or transmission.

"Opus is the first state-of-the-art, free audio codec to be standardized. We think this will help us achieve wider adoption than prior royalty-free codecs," Jean-Marc Valin, a Mozilla employee and author of Opus, said in a blog post today. … Read more

How corporate bickering hobbled better Web audio

For more than three years, Skype has worked to improve online audio through involvement in a project now called Opus. But perversely, Skype's new owner, Microsoft, is undermining Opus just as a Web standards effort is poised to carry it into the mainstream.

Opus is an audio "codec" -- technology to encode and decode media streams for efficient transmission over the Internet or storage on computing equipment. Opus backers besides Microsoft's Skype division include Google, Opera, and Mozilla.

Opus has a lot of potential to improve online audio, something that's increasingly important as more communications … Read more

Opera reaches 200M active users; Facebook tops Africa sites

The combined number of mobile users around the world using the Opera Mini mobile Web browser has hit 200 million users per month for the first time, the Norway-based company said today.

At the same time, users in Africa are leading the uptake in mobile browsing thanks to Facebook, despite the social network's monthly active users remaining mostly flat month-on-month in the past quarter at 955 million.

The makers of the Opera browser have released their monthly State of the Mobile Web report, which looks at its product usage across more than 50 countries.

Out of the 200 million … Read more

IE hangs on to more than half of browser market

Internet Explorer has been facing growing competition from rival browsers, but it's still the leader with more than 50 percent of the market, according to Net Applications.

IE grabbed a 54 percent market share last month, down from 56.7 percent a year ago. Traveling further back in time reveals an ongoing decline from November 2007 when Microsoft held almost 80 percent of the desktop browser market.

In second place with a 20 percent share in June, Firefox has also seen its share gradually drop. Mozilla's browser scored a 23 percent share a year ago after hitting a … Read more

Get a sneak peek at the new YouTube video page

The Internet is ever-changing, and YouTube is no exception. With Google's switch to a more minimal homepage design, it comes as no surprise that YouTube will be following that path as well. The changes aren't too dramatic, but they seem to help streamline user interaction with each video page. So instead of waiting for the newest YouTube remodel, why not take a look at it now? Here's how to get started:

Note: The following instructions have only been tested for Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and Internet Explorer.

Step 1: Open your browser of choice and open any video … Read more

Opera 12 takes the stage late

A little bit behind schedule, Opera 12 makes its public debut today with numerous changes that mostly focus on faster browsing. But where the Norwegian browser used to take the lead on feature development, it now feels more like an understudy.

You can get Opera 12 for Windows (download), Mac (download), and Linux (download). There's nothing explicitly wrong with it. In fact, version 12 makes a number of good improvements.

Most importantly is an overall focus on speed. Quirky features such as Widgets, Unite, and Voice have been killed off, which means that there's less bloat in the … Read more

Opera 12's fast, but where's the leadership?

The bottom line: Extensions, competitive page-load times, solid features, and good support for "future Web" technologies make Opera 12 an excellent browser, but it's treading water where it used to lead.

Review: The second-oldest browser currently in use, Opera debuted way back in 1994 and continues to attract attention. Its feature-phone version claims more than 160 million users worldwide. While desktop Opera isn't quite as heavily used, it has developed a reputation as a leader on feature development, and can hold its own against the big four.

Opera covers the basics with tabbed browsing, mouse-over previews, … Read more

Opera 12's fast, but where's the leadership?

The bottom line: Extensions, competitive page-load times, solid features, and good support for "future Web" technologies make Opera 12 an excellent browser, but it's treading water where it used to lead.

Review: The second-oldest browser currently in use, Opera debuted way back in 1994 and continues to attract attention. Its feature-phone version claims more than 160 million users worldwide. While desktop Opera isn't quite as heavily used, it has developed a reputation as a leader on feature development, and can hold its own against the big four.

Opera covers the basics with tabbed browsing, mouse-over previews, … Read more

Opera 12's fast, but where's the leadership?

The bottom line: Extensions, competitive page-load times, solid features, and good support for "future Web" technologies make Opera 12 an excellent browser, but it's treading water where it used to lead.

Review: The second-oldest browser currently in use, Opera debuted way back in 1994 and continues to attract attention. Its feature-phone version claims more than 160 million users worldwide. While desktop Opera isn't quite as heavily used, it has developed a reputation as a leader on feature development, and can hold its own against the big four.

Opera covers the basics with tabbed browsing, mouse-over previews, … Read more

Facebook appears to choose Opera over Chrome for recommended browser list

Let the conspiracy theories begin.

Facebook has apparently booted Google's Chrome browser off its supported recommended browser list, instead highlighting Opera, according to Favbrowser, which managed to cache a page with the note.

It's uncertain how official the page is, as it no longer accessible. Under Facebook's support page, all four major browsers are listed.

The switch is particularly noteworthy because of speculation that Facebook is interested in acquiring Opera. Facebook, meanwhile, has long considered Google a competitor in the social arena.

Sitting alongside Opera in the cached supported browser page is Microsoft's Internet Explorer and … Read more