Opera 51 for Android launches with built-in VPN - gHacks Tech News

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Opera 51 for Android launches with built-in VPN

Opera Software released Opera 51 for Google's Android operating system a moment ago. The new version of the web browser is the first stable version that includes VPN functionality.

We took a look at the beta version of Opera for Android in February 2019 and the VPN functionality that it included, and most of what we have said back then is still true in regards to the final release.

The built-in VPN solution, better browser proxy as it works solely in the web browser, is not Opera's first launch of a VPN service. The company launched a standalone app called Opera VPN back in 2016 and retired the app in 2018.

Opera 51 for Android: the VPN

opera vpn android

The built-in VPN in Opera 51 for Android needs to be enabled before it can be used. You can do so in the Settings under VPN.

Just toggle the option to get started. You get a couple of extra options that give you some control over the functionality:

  • Set a desired region.
  • Bypass VPN for Search.
  • Use VPN for private tabs only.

Search bypassing may require explanation. Basically, what this does is reveal your "real" location to the search engine so that it can serve you with local content. While that may be beneficial if you like to get news from a specific region or search results in a specific language, it does mean that you connect using your "real" IP address and not the IP address of the search engine.

Similarly, if you enable the exclusive private tabs use, all regular tabs won't use the VPN connection.

The built-in VPN has advantages but also disadvantages over dedicated VPN applications. On the positive side, it is much easier to use it as you just need to toggle an option to do so. Also, you may trust Opera Software more than some of the companies that published VPN solutions.

Last but not least, it may be used directly without registration, and it is free to use without bandwidth or other limitations.

One of the main disadvantages of Opera VPN is that it works only in Opera. If you want to use a VPN globally, you need a dedicated VPN solution instead.

Closing Words

Opera VPN is a straightforward browser proxy designed specifically for improving your privacy while you are using the Opera web browser. It does not offer perfect anonymity though and lacks some of the features such as automatic disconnects when the VPN connection dies or support for filters that you'd expect from a VPN service.

All in all though it is a good addition to Opera, especially since it is free and completely optional to use.

Now You: Do you use a VPN service?

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Opera 51 for Android launches with built-in VPN
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Opera 51 for Android launches with built-in VPN
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Opera Software released Opera 51 for Google's Android operating system a moment ago. The new version of the web browser is the first stable version that includes VPN functionality.
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Comments

  1. crambie said on March 20, 2019 at 10:58 am
    Reply

    Hands up who trusts a free VPN, anyone? no. Hands up who trusts a free VPN owned by a Chinese company, still no hands, what a shock.

    1. fxxxj said on March 21, 2019 at 4:36 am
      Reply

      GO GIVE ALL YOUR PRIVACY DATA, INTERNET TRAILS, PHONE CALLS DETAILS, ETC TO YOUR TRUSTED FUCKING US DOG GOVERNMENT !

      1. JB said on March 22, 2019 at 1:32 am
        Reply

        Nobody mentioned the US Government, the choice could be in between China or Switzerland, Germany, Iceland, others.

        And even if the choice comes down to China or the USA, I rather be with a country where there is free speech and freedom of press, I rather support the USA.

      2. Darren said on March 22, 2019 at 7:17 am
        Reply

        Right on comrade. You tell him.

  2. Barry said on March 20, 2019 at 11:47 am
    Reply

    VPN is good when you’re doing online banking and other personal online business. considering that the hackers love to annoy average users. By stealing all that lovely data. and not to mention that certain online service providers intentionally sell user information on the dark web.

    On to Opera VPN, it works all right, I wouldn’t recommend downloading torrent using that. It’s adequate enough for basic stuff, I used it couple of times.

  3. ppp said on March 20, 2019 at 3:17 pm
    Reply

    I hope they are really using some Chinese VPN. China will never give my data to my government.

    1. JB said on March 22, 2019 at 1:38 am
      Reply

      Tibet information is illegal in China, porn is illegal in China, free press is illegal in China, VPNs are illegal in China. It really isnt about them giving away your data or not, it is about censorship and free speech, the rot spreads when you don´t cut it off.

  4. NoName said on March 20, 2019 at 3:55 pm
    Reply

    I prefer China gvt. spying over US…

  5. Šime Vidas said on March 20, 2019 at 5:17 pm
    Reply

    A VPN service that is both private and free? The article lacks some (healthy) skepticism, I think.

  6. AwesomeUnicorn said on March 20, 2019 at 9:28 pm
    Reply

    “VPN is good when you’re doing online banking and other personal online business. ”

    Sounds like a sale point! A rouge VPN will know your financial and personal data. I wonder how many VPNs are really owned by shady entities; isn’t difficult having money to burn in the mafia and setup a VPN service to ‘fight against cybercriminals’… Personally, I only use certain devices to access my financial information, and it never involves using a VPN. If buying online, I use paypal and a dedicated email for such services. If a place that stores your credit card data gets hacked, a VPN isn’t going to save anyone.

    “I hope they are really using some Chinese VPN. China will never give my data to my government.”

    You don’t want an outside entity from China or Russia with your financial data. Honestly, if I’m not doing anything criminal why worry about the government looking up my “data”. Your job, insurance co or bank probably already sold/shared your personal data to their partners. And Baby Jesus knows all our naughty thoughts. :/

    I do believe in: privacy rights, governments actually protecting their citizens, and the freedom to use a legitimately VPN service to encrypt your data in unsafe places; just try to be smart how you share personal and financial information online.

    1. thebrowser said on March 21, 2019 at 1:44 am
      Reply

      “If a place that stores your credit card data gets hacked, a VPN isn’t going to save anyone.”

      A VPN will however save you from eavesdroppers who could collect your information such as your PayPal username and password. This is unlikely to happen to you directly in your home or at work but if you do use a public Wi-Fi access it’s not a bad idea to use a (trustworthy) VPN.

      “Honestly, if I’m not doing anything criminal why worry about the government looking up my “data”.

      I don’t mean to start a debate but I have a few things for you and others to consider here:

      1) First of all you may not be doing anything illegal but you do have a right for privacy. This is a more fundamental statement of course, you are absolutely welcome to share your data with whom and however you like. But it’s a right that you have and most importantly we all have, and incidentally when enough people start not caring about such things people tend to forget and neglect too look after it.

      2) Also you may not be doing anything illegal but that doesn’t mean you don’t have anything to protect or hide, even if only on occasions. Mind you, that if the government has any interest in my data there are legal processes in place for them to request it properly without violating my rights.

      3) Again, just because you are not doing anything illegal doesn’t mean your government will use your data in a legal way too, or ethical. And even if they do so today, data can be stored very cheaply for a very long time, and as history has proven many times before changes in leadership often lead to big changes in policies.

      “Your job, insurance co or bank probably already sold/shared your personal data to their partners.”

      4) That’s probably true. That doesn’t mean is right. That doesn’t mean it ought to be this way tomorrow, or at all. We can do something about it today and we have many tools (just like they do) at our disposal to do so.

      Consider this scenario: let’s say a single mother in her 40’s needs a job. She has many expenses because of her kids and she doesn’t really have a lot of options to choose from, but she does have a job interview.

      The company she’s interviewing to work for has purchased data in advance about their top candidates, including this woman, and know very well that she’s not in a position to negotiate a good salary, so she’s offered considerably less than she would otherwise. She has no leverage, her 40 years of experience means nothing because that job will be filled with someone else equally experience or that can be trained to do so. After all, the company is actually prepared to pay someone to do the job, but they want to save some cash. All those negotiations tricks like “looking in the eye” or “give a good impression” or whatever don’t work. She effectively has no choice but to accept this underpaid job because “somehow” that company new too much about her.

      You think this is paranoid? I don’t think so, it is in fact called negotiation, and just as in a poker game you need to play your cards right. That is by the way exactly what happens in marketing departments when they conduct studies in their targeted audience to sell products. In this case, the “end product” is to fill in a position at the lowest cost possible. Buying data for a dozen of people is cheap (or cheap enough). In fact it’s completely free if you are obsessively documenting every aspects of your life in any social media like most people do. It’s also legal, because no one cared, and even if it wasn’t you’d have no way to prove it.

      What do you think of all this?

      1. Anonymous said on March 22, 2019 at 4:26 am
        Reply

        “The company she’s interviewing to work for has purchased data in advance about their top candidates, including this woman, and know very well that she’s not in a position to negotiate a good salary, so she’s offered considerably less than she would otherwise”

        a company buying data just to underpay potential applicant? nice write up there man. you might even go for oscar lol

      2. thebrowser said on March 23, 2019 at 4:58 am
        Reply

        Companies today already buy your data as a potential consumer when they want to sell you products. For example this happens when stores in a shopping mall track your device’s Wi-Fi and Bluetooth MAC address to know which stores have you been visiting in the last year.

        So why not doing that for potential candidates at a company? The purpose is not JUST to underpay someone, the purpose is save money. Why do you think they always ask about your salary expectations? If you happen to say something under what they are willing to pay you, that’s instant profit unless they choose to pay you more. It’s a simple negotiation. Also, they already buy data from candidates when they run background checks, the example I’m stating is just one way to put data you’ve already purchased to use.

        In any case, this was just an example, but as the saying goes: “Reality surpasses fiction”, so I don’t think I’ll be getting Oscars soon :)

      3. AwesomeUnicorn said on March 26, 2019 at 5:52 pm
        Reply

        @thebrowser: I forgot to mention, when buying or accessing financials online it’s through a trustworthy wired connection. I wouldn’t do the above vacationing on a gay cruise in Iran… I hear you and agree, we should always decide the data shared that abuse our privacy. Just be mindful how a free service from Google or Facebook profits, and isn’t mandatory to neither join them or post your journal. A responsible adult doesn’t want to feel our government is treating us like a parent who monitors everything their child does, because they don’t know any better… Sadly, some representatives and corporate interests feel this way and abuse our trust in our system.

        @John Fenderson: Unfortunately, it’s ridiculous of expecting an intelligence agency without data; an individual or group being targeted from a vindictive opposition, it’s an old ‘dirty game’ and can be relative. My statement simply meant, if you’re a decent US citizen, you shouldn’t be paranoid, but take personal responsibility of your conduct and be conscious of online security and privacy rights.

    2. John Fenderson said on March 22, 2019 at 5:36 pm
      Reply

      @AwesomeUnicorn: “Honestly, if I’m not doing anything criminal why worry about the government looking up my “data”.”

      History provides a long list of examples of why you should worry about this sort of thing.

  7. ShintoPlasm said on March 20, 2019 at 9:46 pm
    Reply

    As far as I know, Opera’s user data is either processed in the EU (for EU users) or Singapore (for users outside the EU). Does anyone accusing Opera of ‘Chinese’ practices have any hard proof for this?

  8. Weilan said on March 21, 2019 at 10:53 am
    Reply

    What I hate about these browsers is that they brag how they can block ads and tracking and now even have built-in VPN, yet none of them have proper ways to block rogue popups on many mobile websites.

    So the question that begs to be asked is:

    Why bloat the browser even more when it still can’t block something as basic as a popup window?

  9. Anonymous said on March 21, 2019 at 3:51 pm
    Reply

    My installed Opera is at 50.3.2426 – I see no VPN option.

    1. Anonymous said on March 21, 2019 at 4:48 pm
      Reply

      And I see no update to 50.1

  10. Daniel said on March 27, 2019 at 5:30 pm
    Reply

    I use vpn apps – I can do it on phone,PC and even Wi-Fi router. I don’t how about the others, but VeePN can do it. It’s really good.

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