Opera Review

written by

Jack Foster

last updated

June 17, 2021

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Speed & Performance


Ease of Use


Mobile App


Customer Support



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Opera VPN Pros:

Opera VPN Cons:

Opera is a free VPN; it is 100 per cent free and there is no paid alternative! 

I am always apprehensive about free VPNs, as they are not usually sufficient on the security front, or in terms of speed! 

However, I always give them the benefit of the doubt and explore the service fully, which is what I have done with Opera VPN. 

So, with that in mind, continue reading to discover my thoughts on Opera.


Opera has changed over the years. In the past, there was a mobile app and a web browser VPN. Today, only the latter is available. 

Although Opera was a free web browser, it was never really a popular one. 

Where has the mobile app gone?

So, what is the deal with the mobile app in any case? Well, it shut down entirely back in April of 2018. Prior to this, it underwent a lot of changes, including the creation of a Viking mascot called Olaf, and a new logo. However, it was not to be, and the app was shut down.

Instead, Opera persists as a web browser only, which has a free VPN built into it. It is very important to understand this. What you’re getting in essence is a web-browser, rather than a VPN. Yes, a VPN is built in, but it is a web browser primarily. 

Where is Opera based?

In terms of jurisdiction, it is rather unclear. Opera Browser is a Norwegian business. However, SurfEasy is the company that manages their VPN services, and this is a Canadian business that purchased Opera a few years ago.

The Canadian jurisdiction is not ideal because Canada is a member of the 5 Eyes Surveillance Alliance. This means that it has an agreement to share data with the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Australia, and the United States. This means that should the Canadian government ask Opera for data, they will hand it over. 

So, now that I have cleared that up, let’s start digging deeper into this VPN browser to see if it is any good! 

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So, let’s start with the speeds. You can always expect a reduction in speed when using any sort of VPN product. However, the speeds aren’t great with Opera. They’re manageable, but they definitely fall into the slower segments of VPNs. 

What is Opera’s server network like? 

The reason why Opera has such slow speeds probably has a lot to do with the fact that there are only three server options.

If that was not bad enough, the server locations are extremely vague, which is no good! You have the choice of the Americas, Asia, or Europe. Therefore, you do not even know what country you are connecting to, let alone what city.

For the ultimate server coverage, NordVPN and ExpressVPN are ahead of the pack.


There are some security features that I really enjoy with the Opera browser. This includes an innovative feature that will figure out how secure a Wi-Fi network is and present you with this data. I think this is a great feature for anyone who is using public Wi-Fi.

Other security features that I like include removing ad-tracking features and blocking ads on the browser.

However, it is critical to remember that this is not a VPN in the traditional sense, rather it is a proxy. This means that there is no encryption in place. With a VPN, advanced protocols and encryption are used to provide security, but this is not the case with Opera and other proxies. 

It is vital to recognise that none of your information is going to carry encryption if you do decide to go down this route.

This may not be an issue to you if you purely want to watch YouTube or Netflix. However, if you care about genuine anonymity, this is certainly not going to be the solution for you.

Does Opera collect logs?

There is a lengthy privacy policy on the Opera website, which I have dissected in full. There are a few interesting statements on there that caused me to raise my eyebrows!

Firstly, with regards to the VPN, the only statement Opera has posted in the policy is the following:

‘When you use our built-in VPN service, we do not log any information related to your browsing activity and originating network address.’

While this is a positive statement, it is not very clear or specific, is it?

On the browser side of things, Opera states the following:

‘When you install an Opera application, a random installation ID is generated. We may collect this identifier, as well as your device ID and hardware specification, operating system and environment configuration, and feature usage data.’

In another part of the policy, there is reference to the collection of your general location for the purpose of serving targeted advertising and news. 

They have also stated the following about the crash reporting system:

It may log ‘some information about your browser’s version, your operating system, platform and some memory data related to the crash.’

Because of these statements, I do have some concerns that information is logged, meaning a location and user profile could be built from this information.

It seems that the logging is harmless, but how can you be sure?

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Ease of use

Ease of use is definitely a quality that the Opera browser has. It is really easy to get started with this solution. All you need to do is head to the app store or website and you can download the browser from one of these two places.

Once you have signed into the browser, it is easy to select the features you want.

Plus, as the web browser is free, you have nothing to lose by giving it a go and seeing if it is right for you.

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If you are looking for a VPN for torrenting purposes, this is not the option for you! As this is purely a website browser, any other activity is not going to be secure.

Therefore, if you were to torrent using external software, your Internet Service Provider would still have the ability to see your torrenting activity.

Consequently, Opera is not going to be effective for torrenting or P2P file sharing.

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Unblock streaming services

Should you be searching for a VPN because you want to unblock streaming services, you may be surprised to learn that Opera is actually effective at unblocking Netflix. This is a big positive! 

Of course, as it is a web browser, you’ll be watching Netflix on the likes of your computer, laptop, smartphone, or tablet.

Does Opera VPN sound right for you?

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In terms of compatibility, this is a proxy, not a VPN. Therefore, you are using Opera as a browser, rather than it being an app installed onto a device. 

You can check out my “reviews by device” if you would like more information on the best VPN for a specific device.

Browser extensions

Opera is its own browser, rather than being a browser extension. However, it operates like a browser extension in the sense that it is a proxy – just like a browser extension is.

What this means is that while it will hide your IP address, it does not have any encryption. This means that your information is not secured effectively. It is imperative to keep this in mind. This is why I always advise people to use a desktop client alongside their browser extension, rather than selecting one or the other.

Customer support

Well, the customer service has improved, with a phone number now available.

If you click on the “help” button, you are actually going to be navigated to a general help page; you are not going to see any information about getting in contact with the VPN provider.

There is no live chat . I managed to navigate through several pages and get to the contact form, but I would like to see more on this front!

There is a support forum for users on the website, but you should not really be relying on other Opera users to give you the information you need.


Opera is a free VPN, so there is not much to say on the pricing front. It is genuinely free as well; you are not going to be prompted to make any purchases.


So there you have it: my insight into Opera. It is important to recognise that Opera is not your typical VPN. Rather, it is a web browser that has a VPN built into it. 

I would never advise using this browser on its own. However, it does have some good qualities, including the feature that detects how secure a WiFi network is. If you are going to use Opera, you still need to use a desktop client VPN in my opinion.

Does Opera VPN sound right for you?

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