I decided to tell the world why I support Opera and think they're one of the biggest contributors of the way the web is as of today and was initially meant to be: access anytime, everywhere and to anyone.
Anytime: web standards support guarantees a page made now can be accessed anytime in the future.
Everywhere: Opera develops a cross-platform browser that can bring information to any device, this includes multiple mobile platforms, video game consoles and TVs.
To everyone: Opera Mini is a symbol of digital inclusion. Can you imagine a tool which has democratized the internet more than Opera's compression technology?
Now let's talk about the "competition"...
Google develops their websites based on the premise they run on Chrome, after that they choose and support selected web browsers via browser sniffing. Some examples of what has been blocked from Opera in recent years: Blogger rich-text editor, Instant search (they took "only" 10 months to make the feature available for Opera users), a Google Images revision ("only" took 13 months), Orkut's chat (patched by Opera, I don't even know if Google cared enough), "not supported browser" message in Picasa Web Albuns and Wave, Google+ broken on x64 Opera, serving inferior version of Google Translate for Opera Mobile, etc... I don't even want to look at how Google+ and Hangouts behave in Opera 12.x right now. I'm haunted by the thought of what would happen if there was one more browser with its own engine in the market.
Google blocked Java in Chrome saying it was insecure while it partners with Adobe to include Flash one of the most dangerous formats in the web. When did that happen? When Oracle (Java owner) was suing Google over possible usage of Oracle code/patent in Android, I'll leave the judgment open to whether it's a coincidence or not.
Google announced they'd remove the H.264 codec from Chrome justifying saying it's proprietary (which is good), but includes Flash, the proprietary plug-in from Adobe. Update: it was brought to me the fact Google hasn't removed H.264 from Chrome yet (it has been more than 2 years after the announcement), unfortunately that makes matters worse.
Update: from a news breaking this week, let's not forget how Google isn't letting Microsoft to release an YouTube app for their Windows Phone users for manufactured reasons.
You may also remember how Google blocked access to its Maps web app from WP's Internet Explorer in the past despite the browser being able to load it without any issues. Thanks Vygantas Lipskas from FavBrowser for reminding me of that.
Some people say bad things about toolbars and programs offered in some freeware installation (adware). They criticize Ask, Bing and other companies but forget about Google Toolbar and Chrome being offered by various software installers completely.
The most recent Google investment against the web standards: NaCl.
Mozilla personnel aways neglect Opera's existence, from claiming they pioneered spatial browsing to the marketing tactic showing themselves as the only option against the big bad Microsoft IE and proclaiming the only choice you have if you want to support the open web is using Firefox. Anyone measured how much time it took for -moz-border-radius to lose the vendor prefix?
What are the latest interesting features Mozilla developed in recent years? Panorama is the only thing I can remember (it has since been separated into extension form) and Opera's tab-stacking is much more practical anyway. Integrated web search, sessions, Speed Dial, synchronization of user data, page compression and small screen rendering: Opera is where innovation is.
MSN and Hotmail browser sniffing controversies are widely known and documented (the release of Opera "borked" version, etc).
Microsoft lives in a web of its own where they implement proprietary "standards" in their browsers and get developers to implement them in their sites by its market share dominance and learning programs.
IE supports the proprietary standard H.264.
I don't need to mention Apple's battles over pointless patents right? They think the only fair way other manufacturers can build phones is in triangle shape so they don't copy their
Includes H.264 and no other codec. And the complete control on iOS rendering engine? Case closed.
(Update on 29/08/2013 to add Maxthon, UCWeb and Baidu:)
In your Maxthon Press Kit for 2011, you claim to be the first browser with tabs in 2005, and yet other browsers had tabs well before 2000.
You also claim to be the first browser to offer synchronization of bookmarks and history (2008), but other browsers did it years before that.
Finally, you claim that unlike other Webkit browsers, you have a team dedicated to optimizing Webkit for speed increases. But we know that Apple and Google have teams working on the same thing. In fact, most of the performance optimizations available to Webkit browsers were done by Apple and Google.
How come you are making all these claims that are obviously not true?!
Baidu is creating an app store similar to Chrome's, which translates to: we don't care about web standards, bring your web apps to run on our non-standardized platform.
Baidu PC Faster™: now we also hijack your OS.
UCWeb, the makers of the UC Browser brags about its patents and use whatever engine they must to get their sub-par browser on platforms.
Let's talk about Opera. I support the respect the company has to the web, following the web standards more strictly and being ethical with its competitors. It isn't the perfection in following the web standards, but we sure know how more strict it's and how it fought to not implement some IE "standards" for example. They switched to the Chromium framework but neither H.264 or NaCl is set to be enabled in Opera AFAIK.
They have values and note they care for preserving the environment and adopted an eco-friendly data center for example.
Opera also strives to bring the best experience in their browser interface with unique features and behaviors and believes in a patent-free approach (check the Opera vision here). That's why I use and recommend Opera Software products, the company contributes to make the web healthier and more accessible.