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Author Topic: Opera now comes with FB Messenger & WhatsApp chat built in  (Read 105 times)

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Offline 1bit

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Opera is trying to lure people from Chrome and Safari by going after WhatsApp's soaring fanbase.
As part of its latest browser update, officially known as Opera v45 or 'Reborn', Opera has added a separate communication panel that lets you chat with friends while browsing the web.

The panel includes icons for WhatsApp, Messenger and Telegram and lets you write messages to friends without disrupting your workflow, or having to do so on your phone. After clicking an icon, the app opens in a panel that partially obstructs the current page. You can then pin the chat app to place it in a side panel. Shortcuts let you switch between these pinned apps, and more apps can be added or removed in settings.

This feature comes from Opera's recently launched "concept browser", Neo. The browser, unveiled in January, replaces tabs for icons and pop-out videos and allows the Norwegian software maker to test new ideas before bringing them to the standard Opera browser.

WhatsApp already offers a web version, and Facebook Messenger is similarly available on a desktop, yet these are via tabs. The Opera update runs them as apps on the browser itself.

Easylist and EasyPrivacy are now enabled by default in the browser's built-in adblocker. Opera became the first major browser to add ad-blocking technology and an unlimited free virtual private network (VPN) service into its desktop version at the start of 2016.

In August, Opera made the app VPN available to Android users in the form of an app, following its roll-out of a standalone iOS app. The iOS version has been downloaded more than a million times.

VPNs let people mask their IP address by routing internet traffic through a third-party server. This enables them to mask their identity because software canít record a userís real IP address.

The technology is used by people wanting to protect their privacy online or to spoof their region, allowing them to watch geo-locked shows on Netflix, for example. But they can be expensive. Opera's free VPN offers a choice of up to five virtual locations: Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, Singapore and the USA.

The full list of features in Opera 45 are here.
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