If you’re an Opera desktop user who’s been waiting for the heavily revamped version but doesn’t like to play the beta game, then today’s your lucky day: the Norwegian firm has released the full, finalized version of its browser for Windows and OS X.
The big change here is Opera’s adoption of the WebKit rendering engine and Chromium framework, in lieu of its previous homegrown efforts. This is a compatibility play – WebKit is what powers Safari(s aapl) and Chrome(s goog), so web developers naturally write for it. We’ve already had the Android version of the new Opera, and now it’s on desktop too.
As we explained when the desktop beta (sorry, “Next version”) came out in May, users will find a heavily revamped Speed Dial feature that allows the organization of bookmarks into folders, a Google Currents-like Discover feature, and a read-later facility called Stash.
You can download the new Opera for desktop from the company’s website and, in the meantime, here are a few screenshots so you can get a feel for the browser’s new look (for OS X, at least). The shots show the Discover, new Speed Dial and Stash features respectively: