The headline new feature is accompanied by a number of other performance improvements.

Opera 41 also includes a majorly revamped personalised newsreader, containing a wide list of tweaks and enhancements to give users some extra features to play with on top of the under-the-hood updates.

Opera’s improved start times don’t come at the expense of functionality, but it’s worth noting that the claimed average improvement of 86% refers to a browser restarted with more than 42 open tabs from previous sessions. Nevertheless, more typical usage should still yield some time savings – the gain is still said to be over 50% for as few as ten tabs, according to Opera.

The improvements have been possible through a smarter start-up sequence, which makes pinned tabs and the last active tab a priority, loading less important tabs in the background without disrupting user experience.

Other performance improvements see battery times extended during video conferencing if Opera is able to choose a hardware-accelerated codec to reduce CPU usage.

The recently introduced video pop-out feature is now also hardware-accelerated to reduce CPU demands by up to 30%. The improvements should be particularly noticeable on low-end computers.

Although Opera 41’s focus has been on performance, its developers have found time to implement a number of improvements to the built-in personalised newsreader.

Highlights include a new RSS detector, which gives users the option of adding a RSS source without knowing its exact URL, plus history navigation for returning to a previous view. There are also various smaller tweaks such as showing fewer recommendations and including saved sources under Settings, enabling them to be backed up and transferred to other machines using the Opera Sync feature.

Opera 41 is available now as a freeware download for Windows, Mac and 64-bit Linux users.

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