Many might think we have more than enough web browsers today. There’s Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari, and maybe even Microsoft Edge on the side. There are also a ton of other browsers here and there, like Opera, but those are pretty much the biggest players. Opera co-founder and former CEO Jon von Tetzchner, however, obviously thinks otherwise. There is always room for one more, and that one more is Vivaldi, which is announcing its entry into the big leagues with its first stable, public 1.0 launch.
To its credit, Vivaldi is very different from those other big browsers in significant ways. But its biggest differentiating factor, from which all its features come from, is that it is unabashedly aimed at power users. Whereas the likes of Chrome and Firefox come with just the basics and leave the rest to extensions, Vivaldi comes with almost all the bells and whistles and part of the kitchen sink.
The list of features might actually be daunting to anyone used to the likes of Chrome, which is why Vivaldi makes it clear that it is not a browser made for everyone. Many of the features, like Tab Stacks and Tiling, note taking, mouse gestures, and configurable keyboard shortcuts, all come with the base installation. In other browsers, you’ll have to find an extension for those. And all of these are customizable from the get go as well. Want to relocate your tabs? Go ahead! Want to make the browser’s colors match the web page? You won’t need an extension for that.
They say that no one size fits all, so there will be bound to be cases where Vivaldi’s dozens of built-in features just won’t be enough for your needs. Fortunately, Vivaldi also supports Google Chrome extensions, though there might be a chance some won’t work in the non-Chrome browser.
Vivaldi definitely offers a refreshing new take on what a web browser can do and its focus on a specific subset of users, instead of spreading itself thin, can probably help deliver a clearer message. And when you’re a latecomer struggling to be heard amidst both shouting from giants and dozens of smaller voices, getting your message across is critical to survival.