Opera, the internet web browser, is beginning to test Opera Crypto, a cryptocurrency wallet interface for its mobile browser, further lowering the barriers for wider adoption of crypto by the general public.

The Norwegian-based Opera announced today it’s launching a beta test of its browser for Android devices that will have the Opera Crypto wallet built in. The new feature will give users the ability to store and use Ethereum as well as providing support for Ethereum-based tokens and digital collectibles, ‘automatically presenting them to users’.

The news is not the first to associate Opera with the world of crypto as earlier in the year the browser added an anti-cryptocurrency mining feature to prevent ‘crypto-jacking’ and it also provides cryptocurrency prices in its currency converter.

The move also follows shortly after Opera filed to IPO on the Nasdaq and news that the world’s largest bitcoin mining firm, Bitmain, would take a major stake in Opera through a private placement at the time of the IPO.

Opera currently makes up just over 4.5% of the global market share in mobile browsers worldwide according to data from Statcounter.com.

Mobile Browser Market Share Worldwide

Mobile Browser Market Share - June 2018

Data Source: Statcounter.com

How Opera Crypto Helps dApps

The exposure of Opera’s not insignifcant user base to the crypto ecosystem is something that’s likely to be extremely important for decentralized app (dApp) developers.

It provides dApp developers a cohesive user experience to allow for crypto payments in their application and also gives them a much bigger potential audience than they would otherwise be exposed to. From the users’ perspective Opera Crypto is “like sending digital cash straight from your phone, and we’ve just made it easier,” according to Charles Hamel, Product Lead of Opera Crypto.

The feature will utilize Android’s secure system lock to sign transactions from the crypto wallet, thereby making it easy for users to use their cryptocurrency without the need for creating new PIN codes or passwords.


Building Web 3.0 One Piece at a Time

Opera is framing this new feature as key to opening up Web 3.0, the next iteration of the internet, which is focused on decentralization (something blockchain and distributed ledger technology excel at). Hamel discusses this possibility in the press release:

By becoming the first major browser to open up to Web 3.0, we would like to contribute to making the internet of the future more accessible. Our hope is that this will accelerate the transition of cryptocurrencies from speculation and investment to being used for actual payments and transactions in our users’ daily lives.Charles Hamel, Product Lead of Opera Crypto

Although Web 3.0 has become somewhat of a buzzword recently there’s an increasing focus on looking at how the Internet will evolve. Work being done on how blockchain will integrate into this new Web 3.0 development stack is likely to be telling as to how both traditional internet companies and the new kids on the blockchain evolve.

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