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Opera launches first Web 3-ready browser for Android

Tony Zerucha

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Opera today announced the launch of its Web 3-ready browser at Hard Fork Decentralized London.

The Opera browser for Android devices now feature crypto wallet integration and Web 3 support. With the newest version of Opera, people using the traditional web now also gain easy access to Web 3, the internet of tomorrow. This means two billion-plus Android users can now get a Web 3 experience through the Opera browser. 

“We are empowering Android smartphone users with an innovative browser that gives them the opportunity to experience Web 3 in a seamless way”, said Krystian Kolondra, EVP browsers at Opera. “I would like to invite all tech enthusiasts who may have heard of blockchain but haven’t yet experienced it to simply give our new browser and Web 3 a try.

“We have made it extremely easy. Our hope is that this step will accelerate the transition of cryptocurrencies from speculation and investment to being used for actual payments and transactions in our users’ daily lives.”

Web 3 is the internet of the future

Web 3 is an umbrella term for a set of emerging technologies intersecting cryptocurrencies, blockchains and distributed systems that, together, extend the capabilities of the web we all use today in important and meaningful ways.

Opera believes the web of today will be the interface to the decentralized web of tomorrow (Web 3). With a built-in crypto wallet, the browser has the potential to renew and extend its role as a tool to access information, make transactions online and manage users’ online identity in a way that gives them more control.

Bringing cryptocurrencies and Web 3 to the mainstream

Web 3 still faces many challenges before reaching wider adoption. These barriers range from users’ understanding of new terminology, to difficulties in acquiring cryptocurrency and to complicated installation procedures. 

People, however, are more likely to adopt new solutions if they are user-friendly and seamless. With this release, Opera is providing exactly such a tool with the hope that integrating Web 3 alongside the current web will make the technology more mainstream.

“Until now using cryptocurrencies online and accessing Web 3 required special apps or extensions, making it difficult for people to even try it out. Our new browser removes that friction”, said Charles Hamel, product manager of Opera Crypto.

Opera for Android now supports Ethereum.

Users can now use Opera to access these emerging Dapps,” Mr. Hamel said. “We’ve decided to support Ethereum, as it has the largest community of developers building Dapps and has gathered a lot of momentum behind it. Opera with Crypto Wallet supports the Ethereum Web3 API, making interacting with these Dapps seamless to the user. We believe all browsers will eventually integrate some kind of wallet, which will enable new business models to emerge on the web.”

Opera for Android will access the Ethereum blockchain through Infura, an infrastructure platform offering secure, reliable, and scalable access to Ethereum.

“It’s a significant step for one of the world’s leading browsers to add an Ethereum-based crypto wallet and Dapp explorer, and speaks to Opera’s innovative roots and commitment to embracing next generation technology,” Ethereum co-founder and ConsenSys founder Joseph Lubin said. “We see this as an important moment in improving dapp accessibility, opening Web3 to mainstream audiences, and encouraging developers to build on Ethereum.”

How to get started

Users first download Opera from the Play Store (on Android devices). In order to start making actual Web 3 transactions, they also need to purchase some Ethereum cryptocurrency and store it in their Opera crypto wallet.

Once the cryptocurrency is stored, users can access a selection of Web 3 apps in the Dapp store, accessible from within the browser’s built-in crypto wallet.

More development in progress

In November 2018, Opera announced a partnership with the strategic blockchain advisory and financial services firm, Ledger Capital, to work on the potential of the blockchain ecosystem.

Opera also plans to also make its PC  browser (Windows, Mac, Linux) Web 3 ready in 2019. The browser can already be tested in its developer version.

Tony Zerucha

Tony Zerucha is an alternative finance journalist with more than seven years experience in the space. The author of more than 1,000 articles, Tony was named LendIt's 2018 Journalist of the Year.

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