Opera updates Android app with faster startup, video downloads

The latest version of Opera's mobile browser for Android ups the ante with a variety of enhancements and bug fixes.

Lance Whitney Contributing Writer
Lance Whitney is a freelance technology writer and trainer and a former IT professional. He's written for Time, CNET, PCMag, and several other publications. He's the author of two tech books--one on Windows and another on LinkedIn.
Lance Whitney
Opera 15 for Android.
Opera 15 for Android. Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET

Android users will find several new features and fixes in Opera's new mobile browser.

Available as of Tuesday through Google Play, version 15 of the Opera browser is powered by the Chromium 28 engine. As such, the app should offer a faster performance and does promise a quicker startup time right off the bat.

You can now download video files and play them directly in the browser. You can also set the location for any downloaded files. And you can open files within the browser from an external SD card.

Other features listed in the update notes include smoother tab animations and a new "open in private tab" context menu.

Fixing a few bugs, Opera improved the method for clearing cookies and resolved an issue that caused the app to be uninstalled from certain Samsung devices. The update also promises memory leak plugs and overall stability improvements.

Opera doesn't enjoy the buzz generated by Safari, Chrome, and Firefox. But the company keeps beefing up its mobile and desktop browsers, so they're always worth taking a spin.