Last time I wrote about Opera and its browser you may remember I wasn’t entirely excited about the direction Opera was headed in.
Since then, Opera has hit a total U-turn and introduced a new browser; Opera Touch. One of my colleagues wrote a review of the browser and from my brief time testing it, it’s clear and plain to see that even Opera itself knew how frustrating their browser had become.
Opera Touch has a refreshed design and is meant to be a companion for users who use Opera on their desktop- features like flow allow you to send links from your phone to your PC or vice-versa. They also added crypto-mining protection which is not common in mobile browsers. The one thing that Opera Touch abandoned is the data saving which means you still have to go with Mini if savings are your biggest concern.
Anyway, today we’re going to talk about Opera’s other app. Opera News.
Why should you download it?
Well, the app curates local news from a number of different sites and it’s way easier than shuffling through a variety of sites for news. If you are a news junky you’ll probably be satisfied with the variety of categories presented to you. These include politics, sports, entertainment, lifestyle and motoring among others.
If you want updates from other regions as well there are a bunch of other countries to choose from and these include Kenya, Nigeria, SA, Tanzania, India, USA and DRC. That’s just some of the countries so you’ll probably get your fair share of news even if you’re not particularly interested in
Save for later
If you see an interesting article but you can’t read it because you’re busy you can just save an article for later. This means you don’t have to make a mental note of whatever it is you wanted to come back to later. That’s one of the cool things about smartphones – they allow us to focus on the more important details if we used correctly.
In terms of ads it seems Opera toned it down in this app. The full-screen ads that found a home in Opera Mini are nowhere to be found in the news app.
Dedicated World Cup category
If you are a soccer fan, the app also has a dedicated World Cup category and once the festivities have started on the 15th I’m sure this will be a good place to get various updates on footballs biggest competition. I’m sure other news services can do this as well but I guess the data savings are exclusive to Opera.
The alpha and omega of Opera’s features –data saving- make an appearance here. You don’t have to worry too much about your data depleting when you use the News app as you can simply enable data saving. You can also select the image quality if you want to save as much data as possible. I did encounter some problems with this feature and we will get to those soon…
A huge problem I faced that made the application pointless for me was the fact that articles were not loading at all if I had data savings turned on. This seems to be a problem that only I was facing and you probably won’t face it. Someone else who used the app in the office had a great experience even with data savings turned on.
Not big on the UI
Well, I’m not a big fan of the UI cause it reminds me of the dreaded Opera Mini (I really don’t like Opera Mini!). This is not a big deal since overall, the UI is very functional and that’s a good thing because you wouldn’t want a news app to dazzle you with an over the top design whilst making it harder to navigate.
Storage may become an issue later on…
If you get into the Offline Reading mode the app proceeds to download 100 articles. The biggest problem I have with this is; the app doesn’t ask for permission or even give users a warning of how much they are about to download. As soon as I downloaded this articles a ‘low-storage’ notification popped up. The problem with features such as this is that some users are not as tech savvy as others and going on to clear the storage is not as easy for others.
Overall, the application is very useful and it makes getting news updates quite efficient and easy. You may want to check this one out…