Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 24th Jun 2008 11:07 UTC
Internet & Networking has a review of Opera 9.5, which also includes various benchmarks for Opera, Firefox, Safari, and IE on both Windows and Linux. Linuxcom concludes: "Opera 9.5 is full to the brim with features and improvements and highly customizable. By rolling in apps such as the mail client and IRC chat application, and integrating them into a user's browsing experience, Opera 9.5 is a worthy challenger to Firefox 3. It surely has enough power and features to make it my favorite browser. If only it were free software and open source!"
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Comment by flanque
by flanque on Tue 24th Jun 2008 11:44 UTC
Member since:

For all the positive reviews of Opera and how superior it is, it still doesn't gain any significant market share.

There's something about Opera that just doesn't appeal.

Reply Score: 7

Extensions, Extensions, Extensions...
by HangLoose on Tue 24th Jun 2008 11:49 in reply to "Comment by flanque"
HangLoose Member since:

Thats the main problem I see for opera...

And please, Opera fanboys, dont try to say that "yes we have it" cos watering flower cans in my browser isnt what Im looking for...

Well integrated extensions like google ones, adblocks and stuff are the difference.

Reply Parent Score: 5

orestes Member since:

Extensions are nice, but does Joe User happy with his IE7 install really give a damn about them before he tries Firefox? I'd say the difference is Firefox's now insane hype machine vs Opera's attempts to market their browser.

Reply Parent Score: 4

TLZ_ Member since:

Why should Opera have extensions?

Opera and Firefox have a fundamentally different philosohpy to features.

Firefox: simple, but *extendable* base.

Opera: everything we think most people need, and then a little more.

You could compare it to the GNOME vs. KDE thing. KDE apps tends to do more than GNOME-apps out of the box while GNOME-apps have extensions/plugins.

Personally I've come to prefer Firefox(just switched, partly because I'm using GNOME these days).

PS: It does support UserJS which is similar to Greasemonkey. So you can sort-of extend it there. (Widgets aren't meant for a means to extend, they're small programs.)

I think that both browsers are really good at their philosophy of choice. Opera has *shitloads* of functions, it's abselutely amazing what you can do with it. Firefox has a relatively simple base, but you can extend beyond your dreams(and Opera) if you want to.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: Comment by flanque
by TLZ_ on Tue 24th Jun 2008 12:15 in reply to "Comment by flanque"
TLZ_ Member since:

I think marketing is a important factor.

Combined with developers and webdesigners being in love with Firefox. (Firebug!)

Opera's new debugger might change that, although I think they're running a little late.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by flanque
by ohxten on Tue 24th Jun 2008 16:19 in reply to "RE: Comment by flanque"
ohxten Member since:

Agreed. Mozilla's PR is crazy (in somewhat of a good way). FF3 was majorly hyped -- IMO, overly so. Opera 9.5's release didn't get much press.

Mozilla had people setup parties, signup to beat a world record, etc. They even got *me* excited about the release, and I prefer Opera (because it feels faster and uses less RAM for me).

To each his own.

Reply Parent Score: 3

All about the Marketing
by dagw on Tue 24th Jun 2008 15:21 in reply to "Comment by flanque"
dagw Member since:

For all the positive reviews of Opera and how superior it is, it still doesn't gain any significant market share.

I know a lot of people will say extensions, but personally I think it's down to marketing. The Firefox team have done an excellent job on getting the Firefox name out there and really promoted it as an IE alternative. They've done this both through grassroots campaigns, by getting journalists to write articles about it and through old fashion media advertising.

Opera on the other hand has been completely silent. I've never seen any advertising for Opera, or an article about it in any even vaguely mainstream press. Opera doesn't have a hoard of users telling all their friends and family about how they should switch to Opera etc.

If two products do basically the same thing and are more or less just as good, the one with the best marketing tends to win. That's what's happening here.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: Comment by flanque
by wanker90210 on Tue 24th Jun 2008 19:12 in reply to "Comment by flanque"
wanker90210 Member since:

Personally I find it to be an excellent browser but I miss Firebug and Web Developer too much. They seem to have addressed that now which is brilliant.

Cairo doesn't support NT 4.0, Windows 98|ME etc so on this platform FF3 is out of the question if I understood my googling results this morning. This is one place I suppose Opera would be recommended if it works there.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Opera DOES gain market share...
by zima on Wed 25th Jun 2008 04:52 in reply to "Comment by flanque"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06 some markets. So perhaps we'll look at them and try to establish why they're choosing Opera?

It so happens that I live in one of such places. First, numbers (also for few other countries in the region...but accidentally quite relevant when it comes to figuring out Opera marketshare)

IE - 54%
Firefox - 39%
Opera - 7%

Czech Republic
IE - 65%
Firefox - 30%
Opera - 4%

IE - 55%
Opera - 25%
Firefox - 17%
(yes, Opera is the leading alternative browser)

IE - 65%
FF - 28%
Opera - 7%

IE - 58%
Firefox - 39%
Opera - 2%

Now, when you live here and see those's quite apparent that browser stats are somewhat related to overall socioeconomic situation in each country - generally Czech Republic and Hungary would be more "west like" in this regard, Ukraine far behind, while Poland and Lithuania somewhere in between.

And this would influence what/when people buy when it comes to hardware that runs their software. Yes, Ukraine would be quite a bit "behind" in this regard - my roommate was from there, and from what he told me dial-up is still dominating, and also his PC, around 1GHz and 256MB of RAM, was rather typical...

And that might be it: when it comes to searching for alternative browsers, roughly the same percentage of people do that in each of those countries (with the exception of "more west-like" economies, I'll get back to that later), HOWEVER Opera is much better when it comes to running on slow machines. "Unfortunatelly" this situation won't get better, long-term, for Opera...

Rampant piracy might also help Opera where it's percentage is rather high - some "PC geek" usually has to set up WindowsXP for somebody from time to time, and he's not only more likely to suggest alternative browser but also knows from the start that Opera does better on slow machines. But this factor doesn't come into play in more mature markets, where people are more likely to simply buy the new machine with whole package and they're set.

And generally people in "left behind" markets are less likelly to be influenced by PR stunts, the ones from Mozilla for example. Network of friends is more important when deciding.

If you saw something more in the data, let us now...

PS. One hope for Opera that I see is profileation of "minilatops" - their slow CPUs and small amounts of RAM should make Opera strengts particularly visible (plus it has rather nice working "fit to width" function). Not sure how long that'll work though, I see they're starting to get more CPU/RAM than my main machine...

Edited 2008-06-25 04:54 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1