Web world bemoans loss of Opera independence

It might have been a smart strategic move for Opera Software to move to the WebKit browser engine and scrap its own Presto, but some think it’s a step backward for the development of the Web overall.

“A switch to Webkit might benefit Opera. It’s just not going to benefit the open Web,” said Mozilla’s Robert O’Callahan in comments on his blog about Opera’s Presto change-o. “This will strengthen the WebKit mobile monoculture and make it even harder for us to promote Web standards over ‘coding to Webkit.’”

Browser engines process the instructions on Web pages written in HTML, JavaScript, and CSS, rendering the page on a person’s smartphone, tablet, or computer. WebKit is used in Apple’s Safari, Google’s Chrome, and the unbranded Android browser. With Opera’s change, there will be three major browser engines remaining: WebKit; Microsoft’s Trident, used in Internet Explorer; and Mozilla’s Gecko, used in Firefox and Firefox OS. Opera will move most of its its mobile and PC browser software to WebKit gradually this year, starting with an Android version that will debut at Mobile World Congress this month.

The concern about Opera’s WebKit move stems from the way new features are added to the Web…. [Read more]

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giveaway / February 13, 2013 / Software
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