bq. Opera Software today released the beta 1 of version 7.50, redesigned from the bottom up for Windows, Mac, Linux, FreeBSD and Solaris. Today’s release marks the first time that upgrades for all desktop platforms have been released simultaneously, with Opera now bringing its Mac browser up to par. Opera 7.50 offers users a significantly improved user experience, with added Internet functions and an entirely new user interface.
Opera 7.5 on the Mac is phenomenal. I recently switched to Opera for Windows as my primary browser, both at work and home, since Opera 7.23 and now with the 7.5 betas. As a browser, Opera has been top-notch, solid standards support, good compatibility, and lots of time saving shortcuts, mouse gestures, and other items that just make browsing more pleasant.
Items that apparently are on the roadmap, but may not make the initial version are stronger services support, integration with system native services like spell check, and possibly more aquafication of the interface (e.g. sheets and native dialogs)
So far I’ve been very happy with Opera’s speed and accuracy of rendering. The interface is essentially identical to that on Windows, so all the productivity enhancing user interface features that are available on that platform are now available to Mac users as well.
All in all an excellent first look. The fundamentals seem to be in place, hopefully soon the issues with integrating the new codebase with the platform will be resolved, and some UI polish will get put together. Opera is in my mind in contention for the title of best Mac browser, and could take the cake if it keeps up its current rate of improvement.