"It's tough to move up from no. 3 when Nos. 1 and 2 are
household names and you're a little-known company from Norway. It's
even tougher when the other guys' products are given away for free
but you charge for yours."
"Accordingly, Opera Software A/S has finally bitten the bullet
and released the newest version of its namesake browser, Opera 5.0,
as a free product. This removes the primary complaint leveled
against Opera and, coupled with some very nice improvements in
Version 5.0, will make Opera a serious competitor to both Microsoft
Corp.'s Internet Explorer and Netscape Communications Corp.'s
"However, although Opera 5.0 is now essentially free, it still
isn't "technically" free. The product, which was released earlier
this month, includes an advertising banner that will help defray
"In addition to price, Opera 5.0 addresses other weaknesses that
held back previous versions of the browser, including subpar
usability and mail client capability. In tests, eWeek Labs found
Opera 5.0 to be a very capable, stable browser with all the
necessary features one would expect. Currently, Opera 5.0 is
available only for Windows systems. Earlier versions of the browser
are available for Linux, Mac OS, BeOS and Epoc."
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