A press release from the Opera web site:
Oslo, Norway – September 20, 2005
Opera Software today permanently removed the ad banner and licensing fee from its award-winning Web browser. The ad-free, full-featured Opera browser is now available for download – completely free of charge – at http://www.opera.com.
“Today we invite the entire Internet community to use Opera and experience Web browsing as it should be,” said Jon S. von Tetzchner, CEO, Opera Software. “Removing the ad banner and licensing fee will encourage many new users to discover the speed, security and unmatched usability of the Opera browser.”
Opera was previously available free of charge with an ad banner. Users had the option of paying a licensing fee to remove the ad banner and receive premium support.
“Opera fans around the globe made this day possible,” said von Tetzchner. “As we grow our userbase, our mission and our promise remain steadfast: we will always offer the best Internet experience to our users – on any device. Today this mission gains new ground.”
So a few weeks ago they offered the browser for free for a day, and now it is free permanently. How are they going to make money? I’m not sure where this is going to take them…