Opera downloads double following new Choice Screen

Posted by Emma Woollacott

Opera says it's more than doubled its browser downloads following Microsoft's forced introduction of the Choice Screen in Europe.

Late last year, Microsoft struck a deal with European anti-trust regulators under which it would add a pop-up screen listing alternatives to its own Explorer browser, and including links to their installation pages.

Since the screen was introduced, says Opera, more than half the European downloads of the latest version, Opera 10.50, come directly from the Choice Screen.

"This confirms that when users are given a real choice on how they choose the most important piece of software on their computer, the browser, they will try out alternatives," said Håkon Wium Lie, Opera CTO. "A multitude of browsers will make the Web more standardized and easier to browse."

Overall, downloads in Europe have increased by 130 percent. In Poland, they were up by 328 percent, and they tripled in Spain, Italy and Denmark.

And with the Choice screen set to roll out well into May for existing Windows computers and for five more years on new installations, Opera is rubbing its hands with glee.