Opera Software has introduced a new integrated ad-blocking technology in its web browser. By using this new feature, which is currently available for developers, web pages load times are up to 90 percent faster. According to Opera executives “advertising fuels the internet”.

Moreover, using the integrated ad-blocking technology developed by Opera offers a 40 percent faster browsing experience than when using third-party extensions, said the company headquartered in Oslo, in a press release published Thursday.

Image: Opera Software
Image: Opera Software

For instance, Opera takes 5.3 seconds in average to load a web page, while using the integrated ad-blocking technology. On the other hand, Mozilla Firefox takes 6.4 seconds in average and Google Chrome 7.7 seconds to load a web page, while using the Adblock Plus extension.

According to Opera, the filtering process occurs at web-engine level, which means that the browser can completely control the loading process of the web page and optimize it, something that extensions can’t do. Executives from the company stressed that “advertising fuels the internet.

“As our new research shows, most webpages today are significantly slowed down by bloated ads and heavy tracking. We don’t accept it – we want the web to be a better place for us all, as users,” says Krystian Kolondra, SVP of Engineering and Head of Opera for computers, in a statement.

Ads can considerably slow down loading times according to Opera

Researchers at Opera’s laboratories tested the page-loading time of 66 popular websites and compared the loading results with Chrome and Firefox using the Adblock Plus extension. It appears that even without erasing the cache, which can slow down the loading results, Opera obtained a 90% better performance when loading some sites.

It seems interesting that the ad-blocking feature comes with a benchmark, which means that web developers and publishers are able to see how much time it takes for a webpage to load when it uses ads and tracking software and compare it with load times of a browsing experience with ad-blocking technology. Moreover, the browser will record how many ads it blocks per day or per week.

Ad-blocking: a controversial practice

In the last years, blocking ads has become an important issue among internet users. According to Opera, the number of people using tools to filter ads grew by 41 percent worldwide and 48 percent in the United States between Q2 2014 and Q2 2015, of which 98 percent are PC users.

Ad blockers are also available for iOS and Android devices. According to a mobile marketing company called Tune, 24.6 percent of mobile users have installed an ad blocking app in the U.S. As a response, several online newspapers and websites have already created campaigns to discourage the use of ad-blocking filters among its users.

The Guardian, one of the first sites that joined the campaign, said on Wednesday that it will run some tests with various forms of “tough” messages to invite people to deactivate their ad filters since advertising is what finances many websites.

The New York Times, which is recognized as one of the best newspaper in the world, said this week that it will try different approaches to asking people to support advertising.

“The best things in life aren’t free. You currently have an ad blocker installed. Advertising helps us fund our journalism,” says a pop-up message that is displayed to some New York Times readers that have installed ad blockers.

Source: Opera Software