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Opera wants to be seen… on your TV

At CES in Las Vegas one of the first hot topics making the grade this year is Opera Software’s technology for TVs and connected devices.

Opera claims it is leading the Internet TV revolution and its browser technology will be embedded into millions of connected televisions, set-top boxes and Blu-ray players during the course 2011.

What does this mean for us, the consumers?
?We can expect that most new TV’s above the budget price range will contain more web-sourced content – content such as extra features from a TV show or film, Twitter chat, and Facebook watching habits being shared between friends.

According to their press release Opera’s vision is

“to bring the best Internet experience, regardless of the device, to the user. Opera delivers quality end-user experiences while maintaining fast performance, a small footprint and consistent feature sets with low hardware and power requirements. Opera’s support for devices includes the latest developments in web technology for tablets, connected TVs and set-top boxes, gaming consoles, vehicles, portable navigation, business terminals and even home appliances.”

Opera is currently seen by many in the internet industry as a long-term player with a small margin of usage as a browser on computers but this new development that demonstrates how it’s browser can be used on other devices like internet ready televisions (IPTV’s) could see it becoming a house-hold name in the UK over the course of the year.

However, there is stiff competition in the fight to be the content application provider of choice for the IPTV market, and not just from traditional web browser developers either. Samsung and Panasonic have developed their own content provision tools for example and this spells as usual a whole host of choices to have to consider when purchasing something like a TV or DVD player.

One thing Opera have got going for them is years of experience in the browser marketplace, and the fact that they embrace ‘open’ and industry standards, such as HTML5 (the new incarnation of the coding language that makes traditional websites) and HbbTV (the ability to integrate web content such as a Twitter feed or Program Guide over the top of a TV show) giving players in the connected TV space the insurance that they can deliver any live or on-demand content or service, on any set top box or TV, from any source.

IPTV’s – whether running Opera software or not – are certainly set to take off over the course of the coming year. The trick here may be to watch for even further developments that will take the control and integration of personalised overlays such as Twitter feeds and Facebook profiles directly from a smartphone to your TV.

Learn more about Opera at