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Opera dumps its own rendering engine in favour of Webkit

Wants to focus on different features
Wed Feb 13 2013, 14:02
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WEB BROWSER DEVELOPER Opera Software has announced that it will move from its own Presto rendering engine to Webkit in its Opera web browser.

Opera Software had just announced that its web browser reached 300 million active users only to say that it will make a big change in its key web browser software product. The firm announced that it will dump its Presto rendering engine and move to Webkit.

Apple and Google use Webkit for Safari and Chrome, respectively, while Microsoft uses Trident in Internet Explorer and Mozilla has stuck with Gecko. According to Opera Software the switch is due to web developers optimising their websites for Webkit to render correctly rather than its own Presto engine.

The firm said the move will free up engineers who have been working on making the Presto rendering engine display websites correctly to work on new products and features. Opera Software will contribute to the Webkit project and said that by contributing to a more popular rendering engine it can have more input to how websites are built.

Opera Software gained a lot of users through its mobile web browsers that were shipped by default on mobile phones. However the firm has found that its web browser has been left out in the cold with Apple bundling Safari on its iDevices and Google shipping its own Webkit browser with Android and developing Chrome.

Opera's move to Webkit might upset traditional users however a firm that is battling with Apple and Google stands a better chance of winning users by working on high level features rather than low-level software. µ


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