Opera released a public beta of its browser of the same name. Opera 11.10 beta, codenamed "Barracuda," features a much improved Speed Dial, more seamless experience loading certain required plug-ins and updated support for various web standards.
The standout among this list of changes is the improved Speed Dial feature, which now supports an unlimited number of dials thanks to a new button that allows the user to add new sites to the list, either by typing the address manually or by picking from a list of selections made by Opera. Existing entries can now also be edited to change the site address or display name.
The Speed Dial layout has also been made more customizable, and the user can now opt how many columns (between two and five) are to be shown on-screen at any one time. Thanks to the improved zoom slider, five columns can now be comfortably accommodated on-screen even on smaller displays.
Other changes in Opera 11.10 are less visible: plug-ins are now simpler to install and use, the example being Adobe Flash Player, which is now able to install seamlessly in the background the first time a site containing Flash content is accessed.
Developers will also be interested to learn that Opera 11.10 has also improved its support for various web standards -- a standout feature being support for the W3C Web Open Font Format (WOFF) and Google's new WebP image protocol. Elsewhere, support is also extended to more HTML5 and CSS3 standards, including the use of multiple columns and gradients.
In related news, Opera will showcase Opera Mini 6 at CTIA, which opens March 22nd, on iPad and iPhone.
"In our lineup, all players are equally important -- we leave no device behind," Opera CEO Lars Boilesen said in a statement. He referred to the company's multi-platform approach. "Android users actually have two different Opera browsers to choose from: Opera Mini and Opera Mobile. Check them out, and decide which one is on the top of your chart."
The browser developer also will showcase Opera 11.10 beta. But you don't need wait. Opera 11.10 beta is available now for Windows (2000 or later), Intel Mac OS X (10.4 or later) and Linux. Less experienced users wishing to take the browser for a spin are advised to install the latest stable version, Opera 11.01, instead.