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Opera adds new features including link previews and GIF support to its chat service Hype


Opera is adding new features including built-in meme creator, link previews and GIF support to Hype, its new chat service built into the Opera Mini web browser that was introduced in Kenya in February 2021.

Hype was launched in Kenya as a pilot market and according to Opera, it is already showing impressive results with more than 250K of activations, more than 150K open chats, and more than 10K of invites to join Hype per day.

This launch, Opera says was one facet of its emphasis on investing and growing its digital ecosystem in Africa, with the goal of bringing more people online.

“When we first released Hype, we raised the bar by redefining the feature set a browser should have. With Opera Mini and a Hype account, users can enjoy a browsing and chatting ecosystem tailored to their needs,” said Jørgen Arnesen, Executive Vice President of Mobile Browsers Business Unit.

“Today we are raising the bar even further by adding new engaging features such as unique built-in meme creator, GIF support and link previews to make chatting even more fun.”

The built-in meme creator

Memes are an essential part of internet culture. With today’s Hype update, Opera is introducing the first meme creator built directly into a browser’s messenger. Users can choose memes directly in chat in Hype. Once chosen, users can edit them by changing the text and experimenting with fonts, colours and placement.

GIF support in chat

Opera has brought GIF support to Hype chat. Making the right choice of GIF is now much simpler with Hype’s search capabilities and scrollable GIF grid. To help users choose the one they want, a GIF preview and full screen view are also available.

Link previews

Snapshot, website header and description will now automatically appear in chat. This function is also available in encrypted chats and on metered networks.

Stickers by local artists and WebSnap

Hype was initially released with a bunch of creative features that suit the needs of Kenyan users, offering a series of unique stickers that reflect their everyday expressions. The sticker collections were created by Kenyan artists Brian Omolo and Lulu Kitololo, making Opera the first major browser to integrate African pop culture into its products.

Moreover, Hype comes with WebSnap, a feature that is well-known from the Opera desktop browser, which allows users to take snapshots from the web. Once a websnap is captured, users can edit it by adding colors, text, and emojis to make it fun and entertaining before sharing it with others. WebSnap also allows users to smoothly share the link of the original website from which they took their snapshots.

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Nixon Kanali

Tech journalist based in Nairobi. I write about tech, business and African startups. Founder and Editor For TechTrendsKE. Nixon is also the East African tech editor for Africa Business Communities. Send tips to nkanali@techtrendske.co.ke.

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