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Browser for power users, Vivaldi now lets you control your Phillips Hue lights with your browser

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Vivaldi, the browser for power users developed and steered by one of Opera’s founders and former CEO Jon von Tetzchne, is coming up with yet another update, to stay afloat in this massively Chrome-dominated space. And this new update, adds a touch of IoT to this very efficient new web browser.

With the latest update, Vivaldi will now let you control lights wherein your desktop/laptop sits, and change the same according to the theme of the website you’re browsing. If you’ve been one of Vivaldi’s users, you’d know that the browser’s tabs adapt their styling w.r.t. to the website you’re browsing. Well, that same color now gets assigned to your room lights as soon as you open them up in the latest Vivaldi update.

Additionally, this release offers a lot of improvements over previous versions, including being able to drag tabs, tab stacks and tab selections between windows. Significant highlights also include delta updates, reader mode button and automatic screen shots in notes.

Light it up !

This is a real first for any web browser globally, and pretty much goes along with the mission Vivaldi says it is on — to dramatically change and advance a user’s visual experience while they browse, along with helping them increase productivity. The only catch to this though, is the fact that this is currently only functional with those expensive Philips Hue lighting system.

However, I personally feel this isn’t going to result in much of a boost in Vivaldi’s user numbers, largely because a normal user (or even a poweruser like me) doesn’t really care of stuff such as this. This of course goes a long way in making it a more immersive, beautiful user experience, but I think there are a lot of other problems which browser need to address, before they come up with these rather luxurious add-ons.

Tab (and Tab stack) dragging

Now this is where Vivaldi could really bring in some increased productivity for its users. The browser already scored some points when it came with that unique anywhere dragging feature for tabs. Like Opera, Vivaldi also offers the tab-stacking feature, letting you create folders of various tabs so that you could group them all under one and browse even more efficiently.

Both of these — tabs and tab stacks — can now also be dragged around on the screen, to put them in a position of your choice. And while most of us would rather prefer them on top (largely because of the sheer habit we have developed for top-tab browsing), it personally did make it better for me when I dragged them all to the bottom, felt like more free space was available on my screen. Give it a go.

Performance improvements

The latest Vivaldi update also brings a lot of performance improvements, like better and easier accessibility of the reader mode, along with smart update downloads even during slow connections. Reader view settings can now be easily accessed using the newly added reader mode button on the address bar. The reader mode button allows you to remove the clutter for better readability.

For those of you who do not have access to high speed internet for downloading the latest of Vivaldi, the browser now offers delta updates for Windows versions, which means only the changes from release to release are downloaded, rather than the entire binary. This results in a smaller download that transfers faster, which is great for users with slow connections. This could be a huge plus.

To make sure that you remember which notes you took on which specific page, Vivaldi has cool new feature upgrade for that. Now, if you add a note from selected text on a web page, the note will automatically include a screenshot of the page. This is on by default and can be turned off in the settings.

Overall, the IoT thing is of course cool, but I am not sure how much it helps in serving the core mission behind Jon’s launch of Vivaldi — a browser for power users. The rest of the updates of course help in increased productivity. You can download Vivaldi 1.5 today from vivaldi.com.

Editor-at-large and co-founder at The Tech Portal. He is a tech enthusiast with interests in new-age technology fields like Ai, Machine Learning, AR/VR, Outer Space and related stuff. Drop him a mail anytime, very reachable.


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