Lesser-known web browser-developer Opera has tried to ease gamers' pain points with its new Opera GX, announced today at the E3 gaming show. It looks and feels much different than the standard browser, with different customizations, but some of the changes go more than skin deep.
For instance, in GX Control it lets you set hard or soft limits on the amount of memory and CPU the browser can use — something every browser could benefit from, frankly — so that you can leave the browser open while playing without taking a performance hit. It does so by intelligently juggling tabs and unloading idle pages; if you have it set as a hard limit, it will close tabs ruthlessly.
The CPU limiter constrains the percentage of CPU the entire browser can hog, which can help when you need to free up cores for streaming but still need to monitor streams via the browser. I wish it were more granular, though, with the ability to, say, allocate a number of cores instead.
Opera's had the ability to pop out video windows for a while, but here the company adds the ability to pin YouTube or Twitch on top of a game, which is nice if you want to monitor a competitor's location on their stream or, at the opposite extreme, keep a walkthrough handy, especially in single-monitor setups. In the next release Opera will be adding a shortcut toggle for it.
Opera GX also uses the sidebar of its parent browser, but customized for gamers; for instance, you can receive Twitch stream-starting notifications.
The biggest hole in the Level 1 feature set feature set — you can download the early access version today if you want to give it a shot and offer feedback — is controller support so that you don't need to jump between the mouse and the controller. The company says that's on its short list of capabiilities to add.
The rest of the browser's features are more about convenience and experience. You can set custom wallpapers and colors, including syncing with Razer Chroma (though it's not the first to do so), and the overall design is more angular, with colored borders to simulate the look of LEDs. (It defaults to black with red outlines, because "red browsers are the fastest.")
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