The days when major browser updates were few and far between are over. Nowadays, it’s de rigueur for browser manufacturers to speed up development, which means opening up less stable builds to the masses in order to get them bug-checked as quickly as possible.
Opera is no exception, and Opera Developer adopts the same approach to Firefox Nightly in providing a completely separate installation of the latest unstable version of Opera for people to road-test without affecting their day-to-day browsing.
The reasoning is simple: you get to try out the new features without affecting your existing installation, so if the developmental version is too buggy for your tastes, you can use your tried and trusted version, no problem. And because Opera Developer updates as soon as the latest development build is released, you can keep checking back regularly to see what’s up and coming and whether the bugs you’ve encountered have been fixed yet.
You’ll be able to differentiate between Stable, Next and Developer builds by the colour of the program icon: Opera’s final stable build icon remains red, Next is a silver grey, while Opera Developer's icon is blue, meaning it’ll be safe for even relatively inexperienced users to try out new features before they become generally available.
Note that this is a very early preview of Opera.
What's new (or planned) in Opera Developer 36 compared to Beta 35?
- Speed Dial. Soon you should be able to see a refreshed, more elegant and easier-to-use solution. You can already find a flag (opera://flags/?search=navi#web-ui-navigation-sidepanel) to put the navigation bar to the left side. Enhanced design and on/off switches for components are also on the way. That ugly, white-blinking effect when switching to bookmarks manager is known, and we are working on a fix now.
- News. This feature should be personalized, super fast to use and customizable. Our work here is continuation of a longer process devoted to enhancements. For the next version, we’re also looking into supporting RSS feeds via News.
- Simple, yet powerful UI. On the one hand, we want to simplify the UI, removing, for example, the sync button from the top UI. But, on the other hand, we’d like to give you more tools and options to adjust your browser according to your preferences.
- More extensions on the toolbar. The long-awaited expander should be delivered in this cycle, which is important for those of you who use a lot of extensions.
- Windows 10 UI improvements. This is something you have already seen in O35 cycle that should now be finalized and delivered to the stable version.
- Synchronization engine improvements. These should mean you get fewer l server-connection kickouts, improving reliability of the service.
- A few more stealth projects. More will be revealed about these later.
Note that not all these features are fully live in Developer v35, but are planned features for the v35 cycle.