Wired News talk with the Norwegian guys behind the “other” browser, Opera, and provide some interesting details on the browser (namely upcoming features.) The founder at Opera whines that Firefox stole their thunder, and wonders why Opera never took off. Well I’m here to help out:
- The only popular browser that requires you to pay to use it, otherwise you’re stuck with ads.
- Weird rendering decisions, such as text sizes.
- Sites that work fine in Firefox and Internet Explorer don’t work right in Opera.
- Due to above, most web designers don’t try to fix the problem with hacks because Opera represents a steady 1% of the browsing demographics.
- Suffers from feature-creep, with ~70% of the features implemented not used by most people that download Opera.
- Not open-source like Firefox.
- Due to above reason, not as many extensions to extend the functionality of the browser, and allow people to “add their own flavor”.
That’s just off the top of my head, as I’m sure I could come up with a few more reasons. The general gist is that Opera needs to stop with the gimmicks, make their browser free, stop trying to follow in Microsoft’s footstep with IE quirks, and get rid of some of the bloat in the current browser.