On Monday this week Opera Software announced the launch of the latest version of its popular web browser for the desktop. The new version is Opera 40. The key attraction with this version is the introduction of a built-in Virtual Private Network (VPN) client developed by Canada-based SurfEasy. The VPN service is totally free. No monthly subscription or account is required.
If you have been using the Opera desktop developer version the feature was introduced back in April this year. I even wrote an article of how I was able to access Olympic video content that was geo-restricted on Twitter thanks to Opera’s VPN feature.
The new VPN feature gives you access to servers located in Canada, Germany, Netherlands, Singapore and the United States. Note that the VPN provides secure connection thus encrypting all data passing between the browser and the server. This will enable users to access content that has been geo-restricted. That is because websites and services only see the internet address that the server assigns to the user’s connection rather than the user’s actual address supplied by their internet service provider.
How to Enable the VPN feature
- Launch Opera browser.
- Click on the Menu It is located in the top-left corner of the browser.
- Then click on Settings in the drop-down panel. The Settings page will load in a new tab.
- Click on Privacy & Settings in the Settings page.
- Check the box next to Enable VPN to turn on the feature.
Once you do that a blue icon tagged VPN will appear to the left of the address bar. Clicking on the icon opens a panel that provides you with an option to manually choose a server, or let the browser choose the optimal location. Note that Opera will choose a server based on server capacity, location, latency, and network speed.
The other new features introduced on Opera 40 are:
- The browser turns on battery saver mode by default when a laptop is unplugged.
- It also includes Chromecast support
- It has added improvements to the video pop-out feature
- Introduction of RSS support in the newsreader
- An updated browser engine based on Google’s Chromium 53.0.2785.101.