Blog Post

Google Dressing Up For Opera

Update: Google spokesperson emailed and said, no comment and that this is just a rumor. Opera spokesperson was even more blunt and said: “This is just as new to me as it is to you. We do not know of any such plans.”

Pierre Chappaz, former head of Yahoo Europe, on his french language blog says that Google might be interested in buying Opera. (Translation of the original post here) This would be a response to Microsoft’s Internet Explorer etc etc etc. In other words ….. a pure and absolute rumor for now. Gary Price has more details on this. Previously I had posted how Google had helped Opera become a free software.

Apparently, the premier tenant for browser’s built-in search window, is Google. “The current most important deal now is with Google,” company spokesperson Eskil Siversten wrote in an email. The company indicated that it has similar referral-for-dollars agreements with the likes of eBay and Amazon. Given that Opera is about one percent of the total browser market, it cannot be making as much money as Mozilla folks.

Given how close Google is with the Firefox community, this one just doesn’t make sense. However, Google could benefit from Opera’s strong presence in the mobile space, where it is beating everyone to the punch. Nokia bundles Opera in most of its new phones including the red hot N-Series phones. In Japan, the ultimate mobile society, Opera is beginning to have an impact. Jon von Tetzchner, CEO of Oslo-based Opera Software in an interview with Business 2.0 had said that wireless was the area of focus for the company.

Google has been severely trailing Yahoo in the wireless space, and this would be a good way to even things out a little. Opera could bring Google closer to the carriers. But I repeat, this is all idle speculation on a rumor that is not even in my second language – so treat it accordingly. Rest assured, emails have been sent to the media relations departments of both the companies.

19 Responses to “Google Dressing Up For Opera”

  1. Nitin Reddy Katkam

    Opera is a pretty cool browser. When I compare it to Firefox and Internet Explorer, it seems more responsive and feels ‘light-weight’. There is a time when you upload files that the CPU usage goes up insanely but that’s pretty much uncommon for me as I don’t send out too many attachments or upload files… the most I do is fill-in text forms by typing into them.

  2. opera is great as a browser….its so lite on my system..firefox crashes a lot these days..

    firefox is better than IE but not better than opera

    i am a opera fan for a longtime.

    google should buy opera and it will rule the world of browsers

  3. The deal makes no sense at all if one considers desktop browsers, but Google are way behind in the mobile game, and Opera’s mobile browsers and their mobile Ajax environment are leading edge stuff and would certainly enhance Google’s steps towards mobility.

    Opera’s browser doesn’t come on all the Nokia Nseries handsets, only on the very first ones (N70, N90), the newer and more interesting devices will have the new WebCore based browser – – as the default browser.

  4. Not far-fetched at all…I don’t think.

    Imagine, if Google creates a web-based (browser) OS which is bootable on any machine/terminal/kiosk using USB. All that is needed is TCP/IP. It boots into a browswer platform for internet access and you can use web-based programs like Google Office/Google Base for creating documents and storing personal (or public) files. No need to have desktop resources…the USB holds all system config files to load into your profile and then all computing is done through Google browser, like you are using a normal computer with no TCP/IP connection.

    The terminals/kiosk are found everywhere like ATM machines, using wireless access (Google Wi-fi).

    I can see it happening. The day the MS desktop OS goes to a browser (web-based) OS. And I say this, while being a big FAN of Microsoft. I’m sure MS is possibly headed in the same direction. — Windows Live.

  5. I think this rumour was started by an Yahoo Europe main honcho. Even if for a second, we agree that Google may indeed acquire Opera (maybe, for its excellent Mobile browser), what about its support for Firefox? Remember, there was talk in January 2005, about Google launching a browser. A tough cookie indeed.

  6. Given that Google employ several key members of the Firefox team (as well as the lead Camino developer) – I would have to assume this is a mobile-specific play – which is a smart move, as they lag there.

    That said, I wonder about the fate of Minimo, Mozilla’s mobile browser…I thought Google and Nokia were the key forces behind that one…interesting times, no matter what. ;)