First of all: yes, according to Opera’s financial results, Opera Desktop is growing. However, its first initial release was 12-13 years ago. Yet, they are still struggling to gain a solid part of the market share (according to HitsLink (yes, they are not accurate)) and are being ignored.
So why did that happened?
1. Opera Software is against software patents. With dozens of innovations (see this post for more details), their current situations would be much better than it is now.
2. Releasing final versions too fast. Remember Opera 9.5 Final release (2 days after RC)? 9.0… If you believe that it doesn’t make a huge impact, because they are fixing all those issues within first week(s), then think about this: what if a new user decides to download Opera x.0 Final? Not much, he just gets annoyed by all those bugs, uninstalls it and probably won’t try it again for a next few months/years.
3. Not listening to the community. Features like auto update, spell check were requested 3-4 years ago… Yet, only Opera 10 will include them.
4. Poor promotion of Opera Desktop. Opera.com home page promotes/used to promote Opera Mini. Most of the “viral videos” (Opera Mini vs. iPhone for instance) were created to promote different products. Same with the other campaigns.
“But Opera doesn’t have unlimited $ like Firefox, Google or Safari to promote its browser”. A perfect example of this: Firefox download day, Firefox community contests, etc. (and people wonder why Firefox is so popular).
Remember when Opera used to have (maybe still do), those affiliate links for every my.opera.com user? I spoke with a guy from Opera Software about that affiliate system upgrade and it was said to me that they are working on that and should be release soon. That was like 2 years ago…
5. Poor GUI. It might not be hard for advanced users to understand all the functions of Opera Desktop. However, novice users having a hard time to do that.
6. Incompatibility. Opera used to not work well with lots of popular web sites. Not much you can do here, not really only Opera’s fault.
It should be also noted that some of the points are already being fixed. For example: GUI and incompatibility issues.
So here you have it. 6 reasons on why Opera Desktop is failing to succeed.
About (Author Profile)
Vygantas is a former web designer whose projects are used by companies such as AMD, NVIDIA and departed Westood Studios. Being passionate about software, Vygantas began his journalism career back in 2007 when he founded FavBrowser.com. Having said that, he is also an adrenaline junkie who enjoys good books, fitness activities and Forex trading.