Opera’s new web browser based on the WebKit rendering engine is now available in beta form for users with Android devices. The beta gives us a taste of Opera’s first WebKit browser, which comes after the company announced earlier this month that it will be dropping its own Presto rendering engine this year.
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Opera has announced that it will gradually phase out the use of Presto, its own rendering engine, in favor of WebKit this year. It will utilize Chromium, the open source project from Google, which powers the search giant’s speedy Chrome browser. Opera’s first Chromium-based smartphone browser will be previewed at Mobile World Congress later this month.
Ad impressions reached a record high during the fourth quarter of 2012, according to data from Opera’s latest State of Mobile Advertising report, with revenue to publishers more than twice that of any previous quarter throughout the year. The figures show that Android continues to increase its share of the market, but it’s got a long way to go before it topples iOS, which boasts a whopping 41.91% share.
In an internal video released today by web browser company, Opera, the initial programmer of the new concept showed off a beta of the new Opera browser scheduled to go live for iOS and Android in February of this year.
The video, posted on Pocket Lint, shows a browser that looks to redefine the typical mobile browsing experience, with icons instead of tabs and gestures instead of buttons. The focus is on the user and using rich web applications, like Google Maps.