Author Topic: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser  (Read 3235 times)

Offline perknh

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Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser

By AMIE TSANG and PAUL MOZURFEB. 10, 2016 for the New York Times

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/11/business/dealbook/china-opera-kunlun-qihoo-golden-brick.html



[T]here are a lot of people happily running Peppermint ICE which hasn't been receiving ANY updates for a while now .. and I personally would STILL consider that MUCH more secure than any version of Windows with up-to-date AV/Anti-malware ;)

--  PCNetSpec, Cornwall, Eng.  Dec 03, 2013 5:18 pm

Online VinDSL

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2016, 02:56:54 pm »
Chinese Opera ?!?!?


Offline perknh

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2016, 03:30:03 pm »
Yes, VinDSL, it appears there may well be a very bright future for Chinese Opera! ;D

Quote
Opera’s board has unanimously decided to recommend that shareholders accept the offer. --Amie Tsang and Paul Mozur

Take a look at the locations of the markets where Opera browser does well:

Quote
Opera has pockets of strength in some fast-growing Internet markets. It is the top browser in Africa, according to StatCounter, and it is the third most popular in Russia and India and the fourth in Indonesia. --Amie Tsang and Paul Mozur

I say this is a smart move for this private equity firm from Hong Kong. 
[T]here are a lot of people happily running Peppermint ICE which hasn't been receiving ANY updates for a while now .. and I personally would STILL consider that MUCH more secure than any version of Windows with up-to-date AV/Anti-malware ;)

--  PCNetSpec, Cornwall, Eng.  Dec 03, 2013 5:18 pm

Offline 10i

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #3 on: February 12, 2016, 07:55:00 am »
I would sell my company for that much money

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Offline perknh

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2016, 02:41:18 pm »
It sure is a lot of money, 10i, but I think, if this purchase goes through, it will be a smart investment for this group of Chinese companies that are seeking to acquire Opera.  I know I'm going to keep my Opera browser up and running.  I'm curious to see how development will go with it.  I'm also curious whether or not Maxthon is one of the companies that is in on the deal.  I haven't seen Maxthon's name mentioned once after reading about this probable upcoming acquisition.

What A Chinese Purchase Of Opera Software Could Mean For Africa

By Dana Sanchez for AFKInsider

http://afkinsider.com/119515/what-a-chinese-purchase-of-opera-software-could-mean-for-africa/
[T]here are a lot of people happily running Peppermint ICE which hasn't been receiving ANY updates for a while now .. and I personally would STILL consider that MUCH more secure than any version of Windows with up-to-date AV/Anti-malware ;)

--  PCNetSpec, Cornwall, Eng.  Dec 03, 2013 5:18 pm

Offline scifidude79

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2016, 08:24:50 pm »
I'd be dancing all the way to the bank for that kind of cheddar.  I wouldn't even care who the buyer was.  ;)

Offline perknh

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #6 on: February 29, 2016, 03:05:38 pm »
I'd be dancing all the way to the bank for that kind of cheddar.  I wouldn't even care who the buyer was.  ;)

And apparently Opera needs to makes some changes to its browser to earn that cheddar. ;D 

My fear, personally, is that with this sale may come a new privacy policy.  It's no secret that President Xi Jinping* has said that all software in China should have a back door to government surveillance.  Like the other Scandinavian countries, Norway has been known internationally to be mindful of privacy issues.  Perhaps its a coincidence (or maybe my memory is wrong here), but I watched development for Maxthon for Linux grind to a halt around the same time China's president made that announcement --yes, you can still get Maxthon for Linux, but it is no longer supported.

Anyway changes will be taking place to Opera browser before its sale, and the changes stated here all sound pretty harmless.

Opera Working on New Desktop Browser Amid Company Sale

by Ina Fried for <re/code>

https://recode.net/2016/02/23/opera-working-on-new-desktop-browser-amid-company-sale/

* Honestly, I give President Xi Jinping credit for being upfront and honest about this.  Personally I feel the entire world's digital security is enhanced by fewer backdoors and not more of them.  But that's just my opinion. 
[T]here are a lot of people happily running Peppermint ICE which hasn't been receiving ANY updates for a while now .. and I personally would STILL consider that MUCH more secure than any version of Windows with up-to-date AV/Anti-malware ;)

--  PCNetSpec, Cornwall, Eng.  Dec 03, 2013 5:18 pm

Offline scifidude79

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2016, 07:28:46 am »
My fear, personally, is that with this sale may come a new privacy policy.  It's no secret that President Xi Jinping* has said that all software in China should have a back door to government surveillance.  Like the other Scandinavian countries, Norway has been known internationally to be mindful of privacy issues.  Perhaps its a coincidence (or maybe my memory is wrong here), but I watched development for Maxthon for Linux grind to a halt around the same time China's president made that announcement --yes, you can still get Maxthon for Linux, but it is no longer supported.

That's been my biggest concern as well.  I don't want to offend anybody Chinese who uses Peppermint and frequents here, but the Chinese government isn't known historically for respecting the privacy rights of its citizens.  I would say that having such a back door would be illegal in other countries, but nobody seems to be batting an eyelash when companies like Apple and Microsoft blatantly collect all kinds of data on their users.

Though, I did have an interesting thought on this.  Windows 10 users would be doubly screwed.  Windows already collects all kinds of data on them and sends it back to Microsoft, who does whatever they want with it.  (hey, they signed the EULA)  It's probably going back to the FBI, NSA, or some other US government agency.  So, if they had Chinese Opera installed on Windows 10, I guess they'd have two governments spying on them.   :o

Offline perknh

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2016, 01:05:16 pm »
Windows already collects all kinds of data on them and sends it back to Microsoft, who does whatever they want with it.  (hey, they signed the EULA)  It's probably going back to the FBI, NSA, or some other US government agency.  So, if they had Chinese Opera installed on Windows 10, I guess they'd have two governments spying on them.   :o

Good one! ;D

I'm wondering how this would work.  Would Opera have to accommodate itself to the privacy policies of the country in which the user is using the device?  Or would all data from devices worldwide eventually call home, in some form at least, say like to Beijing?  It sounds ludicrous, really, but I imagine Google or Microsoft can already do this to a great degree.  So, why wouldn't another powerful state government do this too --especially since we know ours does? :-\

Right now, Opera has satellite offices in many diverse countries:

http://www.operasoftware.com/company/contact

I hope our personal data will not be observed and diverted elsewhere.  When a user sees the green padlock, he or she needs to have confidence that his or her Amazon purchase is secure.  When a user uses DuckDuckGo, he or she needs to have confidence that DuckDuckGo is doing its job.  I'm going to read Opera's privacy policy when it changes hands.  For me, I want to continue to see the first sentence of Opera's privacy policy that Opera has right now: "General: No personal identifiable information is collected."  These are the words I need to see in the privacy policy of a browser I am using. ;)


This is Opera's Privacy Policy right now.

Spoiler (click here to view / hide)
[close]
« Last Edit: March 14, 2016, 03:35:08 pm by perknh »
[T]here are a lot of people happily running Peppermint ICE which hasn't been receiving ANY updates for a while now .. and I personally would STILL consider that MUCH more secure than any version of Windows with up-to-date AV/Anti-malware ;)

--  PCNetSpec, Cornwall, Eng.  Dec 03, 2013 5:18 pm

Offline perknh

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #9 on: March 06, 2016, 07:55:40 pm »
Opera fires up new browser as engine of change
The Norwegian company thinks it's time for fresh ideas for Web browsers. Later this year it'll reveal an attempt to make them adaptable and intelligent.
by Stephen Shankland for c|net Mobile World Congress

http://www.cnet.com/news/opera-software-new-browser-due-2016-chrome-firefox-safari/
[T]here are a lot of people happily running Peppermint ICE which hasn't been receiving ANY updates for a while now .. and I personally would STILL consider that MUCH more secure than any version of Windows with up-to-date AV/Anti-malware ;)

--  PCNetSpec, Cornwall, Eng.  Dec 03, 2013 5:18 pm

Offline scifidude79

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #10 on: March 06, 2016, 08:01:19 pm »
Meh, I like my browser pretty basic, with as few bells and whistles as possible.  Things like a pop up blocker keep us sane, but I see no need for a browser to "adapt to" what I'm viewing.  Just display it.

Offline perknh

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #11 on: March 07, 2016, 06:20:05 am »
Yes, it sounds like it's adding more features for it Windows users in China.  I've seen this happen before with Maxthon (for Windows).  It ended up with too many bells and whistles for my taste.  >:(

This is how Opera is pitching this --with a comment area:

#StillYourOpera for computers
http://www.opera.com/blogs/desktop/2016/02/stillyouropera-for-computers/

Two threads from Opera forum concerning this purchase:

1)  Please do not accept the investments from 360 firm.

http://forums.opera.com/discussion/1871209/please-do-not-accept-the-investments-from-360-firm-

2)  Opera Sold (I don't believe the sale has actually gone through yet.)

http://forums.opera.com/discussion/1870807/opera-sold

The gist of all these comments from Opera's blog, and the two threads from the forum, is that this sale does not sound good for Opera users who are concerned about their privacy.

I go back years with Opera.  I love the ability to stack thumbnails, tab preview, and personalize the background theme.  This saddens me. :( 



 
[T]here are a lot of people happily running Peppermint ICE which hasn't been receiving ANY updates for a while now .. and I personally would STILL consider that MUCH more secure than any version of Windows with up-to-date AV/Anti-malware ;)

--  PCNetSpec, Cornwall, Eng.  Dec 03, 2013 5:18 pm

Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #12 on: March 07, 2016, 06:21:10 am »
Not really seeing it myself either

Quote from: Chief Executive Lars Boilesen
"I want to add more smart features," with a browser that recognizes whether you're reading news, checking email, or social networking, then adapts to suit the task, Boilesen said. For example, "if you're shopping, you could get recommendations on the side. We're trying to predict that."

Web pages already adapt the browser to suit the task .. a news page already looks completely different to a webmail page, which are laid out differently to social media sites....

Something tells me it's his last example that's the one behind this ;)

[EDIT]

I've never been an Opera fan, I *want* to like it and see another choice .. but to me they've always seemed to over think then over feature and overcomplicate their browser .. the days of "suites" and over reach are long over.
(lot of "over" in that sentence eh ? .. maybe it says something .. erm, over and out)
« Last Edit: March 07, 2016, 06:28:48 am by PCNetSpec »
WARNING: You are logged into reality as 'root' .. logging in as 'insane' is the only safe option.

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Offline perknh

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Re: Chinese Group Bids $1.2 Billion for Company Behind Opera Web Browser
« Reply #13 on: March 07, 2016, 07:43:51 am »
It's clear to me that Opera is being modified for the Chinese market.  Commercialism is promoted in China:  Freedom of thought, and freedom of expression, are not.  I doubt that personal privacy concerns will rank high on the new Opera owners' list of priorities.

Opera could have probably remained viable in the West if Opera had changed its priorities years ago.  Yes, there was too much junk in the Presto-based browser of yesteryear. And, believe it or not, you still can't add Peppermint as a default search engine in Opera 35, and you still can't modify the settings without a special finger key combination to become a superuser.  :-\  Also, you'd think there should be no compatibility problems between Gmail and Opera, but I've found if I need to change languages, the yellow highlights for spell checker freeze permanently into the final copy --even after it's mailed.  Fortunately, this does not happen if I stick with English, and English alone --which is what I do most of the time.

These are the things I wish Opera would have fixed.  Then maybe Opera would have become more of mainstream browser in the West.  It still is a gorgeous browser, and very well-named.


Update:  9 March 2016

This article gives us a better idea of how this acquisition occurred, and what the future plans for Opera may be.  In regards to what PCNetSpec said in an earlier post, all I can say is that I hope Opera doesn't become a "suite" style browser.  That would be dreadful.

Opera CEO: Sale To Chinese Consortium Wasn’t Our Decision

by Frederic Lardinois for TechCrunch

http://techcrunch.com/2016/02/25/opera-ceo-sale-to-chinese-consortium-wasnt-our-decision/
« Last Edit: March 09, 2016, 02:09:42 pm by perknh »
[T]here are a lot of people happily running Peppermint ICE which hasn't been receiving ANY updates for a while now .. and I personally would STILL consider that MUCH more secure than any version of Windows with up-to-date AV/Anti-malware ;)

--  PCNetSpec, Cornwall, Eng.  Dec 03, 2013 5:18 pm