Google Shows Opera Fans Some Muscle

July 14, 2012

For a short time, Google was playing hard ball in its quest to dominate the world with Chrome. I mean the Internet. Planet Botch informed us, “Google Service Drops Support for Opera.” The service in question is Blogger, which Bob Leggitt uses to create Planet Botch. Leggitt is rightly miffed by the development, and suggests it portends more strategic disruption down the road.

Recently, Leggitt began to get this message while using Opera to access Blogger: “Your browser is no longer supported by Blogger. Some parts of Blogger will not work and you may experience problems. If you are having problems, try Google Chrome.” The message can be dismissed, but pops up again every time. He. Refreshes. Or. Changes. Screens. Very irritating. Oh, and so far the message itself is the only “problem.”

Now, if Opera were some obsolete browser, it would be understandable for Google to drop support. But it isn’t. Opera is very much alive and well, and Leggitt was using the most recent version. Though less well known than some other browsers, the application does boast nearly 300 million users. That’s only around 50 million fewer than Firefox.

Leggit notes:

“The reason I felt it important to pass on this news to non-Opera users is that I’m wondering if Google are going to stop at Opera? I get the sense that this could be the thin end of a wedge, and that Opera may not be the only browser which ends up getting the cold shoulder. I also wonder if Blogger will be the only Google service to experience this snub. The bad news is that I can’t see anything which would make Blogger an exception.”

Google did an about face. But will Firefox be next? Internet Explorer, even? And will we soon see this crop up in Gmail, Google+, and YouTube? I’m sure Google would like nothing better than to see the whole world plated in Chrome.

Cynthia Murrell, July 14, 2012

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