Opera Next–the auto-updating test edition of the next major version of the Norwegian Web browser–is out in a new version, 11.50. It has a clever addition to Speed Dial, the page of thumbnail links to favorite sites which has been widely imitated since Opera invented it: extensions. Rather than just depicting shrunken versions of sites you’ve saved, Speed Dial can now include widgety little applications, such as the weather one in the lower left-hand corner of the screen above.
Like most browser innovations, Speed Dial extensions will only be interesting if they gets embraced by developers, who’ll need to build them in large quantities. And it’ll be be most interesting if it turns into a standard, so that users of all browsers get to enjoy it, too. But if you like checking out nifty new Web concepts, it’s worth a peek right now. As is Opera in general–every time I revisit this browser, I wonder why it’s not more popular. (According to Google Analytics, only one percent of you use it to visit Technologizer.)