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Opera becomes the first major browser to debut a built-in cryptocurrency wallet

Opera has announced the launch of a private beta version of its Android browser that will include a built-in cryptocurrency wallet.

In a new press release, Opera has confirmed that a new version of its Opera Browser for Android will introduce a built-in cryptocurrency wallet that will support Ethereum’s Web3 API.

The news is significant for the fact that the wallet would touch hands with an estimated 250 million users, with over one hundred million consumers in Africa alone. It is presently estimated that the browser enjoys a 3.5% usage share of all browsers globally, and more specifically claims a 4.55% usage share for all mobile web browsers globally.

In a statement to the press, product manager Charles Hamel noted that Opera’s “hope is that this will accelerate the transition of cryptocurrencies from speculation and investment to being used for actual payments and transactions in our users’ daily lives.”

Hamel went on to add that “we believe the web of today will be the interface to the decentralized web of tomorrow…By becoming the first major browser to open up to Web 3.0, we would like to contribute to making the internet of the future more accessible.”

The presence of the wallet will enable millions of mobile internet consumers to receive and issue cryptocurrency payments without the need to download an additional wallet or application.

The advent is not the first occasion in which Opera has dipped its toes into cryptocurrency. Earlier this year, Opera moved to add cryptocurrency mining protection as a standard feature across all its mobile browsing platforms.

The firm’s anti-cryptocurrency mining feature is now activated by default on both Opera Mini and Opera for Android, giving its users some piece of mind while browsing the web.

The firm debuted its new security features by noting that cryptojacking is estimated to affect over one billion users around the world, while some three million websites are further predicted to have been exposed to cryptojacking-scripts.