A major reinvention for the Opera web browser was the release of Opera 15 in 2013 where it dropped its own Presto rendering engine in favour of Google Chrome’s rendering engine, Blink.
This was widely publicised in Opera’s News:
"Today we released the latest and greatest version of our desktop browser for Windows and Mac. Opera 15 marks the next stage in our evolution towards a consistently better browsing experience on your computer. (Note: it’s not an auto-update, so you will have to make sure to download the new version yourself.)"
This new version saw a completely re-designed user interface as well as a number of new features. A distinctly new feature to the Opera browser is the Stash feature, Opera’s new take on bookmarking. This feature records the location, meta-data and screen shot of a webpage. It places this information into a collapsible list entry on the browsers start page that can be searched by keyword or scanned visually by the webpages snapshot. It allows a user to visit a webpage and keep it in their stash for quick accessibility on another browser session.
Opera’s Desktop Team explains their new stash feature:
"We found that modern browsers are hard to do research in. You open tab after tab (comparing different shopping items for instance), and after a while you can’t keep track of what’s where. Sessions and tab stacking attempted to help, but also confused a lot of users, adding extra UI complexity. So we came up with Stash, which is a vertical overview of items you’ve added with super-fast full-text search, so you can compare and filter. This limits the amount of tabs you need to have open, reducing the number of running processes.Thus far, we’ve seen people using Stash in different ways to improve their browsing workflow, so we’re excited to see where this will go!"
Opera runs a rapid release cycle and since the release of the new Opera 15 have introduced several streams to allow users to keep up to date with the latest developments. These include:
• Opera (Stable) – Released every couple of weeks, this is the most solid version, ready for mission-critical daily use.
• Opera Next – Updated more frequently than Stable, this is the feature-complete candidate for the Stable version. While it should be ready for daily use, you can expect some bugs there.
• Opera Developer – A bleeding edge version, you can expect a lot of fancy stuff there; however, some nasty bugs might also appear from time to time.