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Opera GX browser jump scared its users, and they are rightfully mad about it

This should be added to the list of "Edgy moves not to try on your users."

Published onDecember 1, 2023

Opera GX Splashscreen
  • Opera GX is a “browser for gamers” with several features that appeal to gamers and enthusiasts.
  • As part of a marketing campaign, Opera GX inserted a loud splashscreen that jump-scared users.
  • While the splashscreen was present for a day only, users could not turn off the feature without manually deleting the splashscreen file or force-updating the browser.

There is no shortage of good browsers on Android or Windows. Choice is abundant, and a browser exists for every need. The browser of choice for many users, especially gamers and other enthusiasts, was Opera GX, which has a unique feature set that stands out from other Chromium browsers. However, Opera GX has found itself in some soup with an edgy marketing campaign gone wrong, as it ended up jump-scaring its users, and practically all of them absolutely hated it.

Earlier this week, Opera GX ran a marketing campaign with comedian Eric André centered around burying your boring browsers. The campaign video is loud and chaotic, but I guess they were aiming for it, so I wouldn’t fault them so far. However, as part of the campaign, the folks at Opera GX also inserted a VERY LOUD Eric yelling “OPERA GX” into the browser’s splashscreen. Needless to say, users who had no clue about the marketing campaign were jump-scared and definitely not amused.

What made the jump scare worse was that the loud splashscreen would trigger every time you started the browser. You’d think the “feature” would be one-time or even optional. But no, you couldn’t even turn off the behavior. You’d need to force an update to the browser or manually delete the splashscreen executable. Even worse, the splashscreen caused the browser to open slower since it would play out this longer splashscreen.

When users pointed out how the browser made their speakers scream, Opera GX doubled down.

Image 426
Opera GX on X

As you’d expect, plenty of users are not amused. The entire Opera GX subreddit is filled with pages and pages of users expressing their dissatisfaction with the move. Plenty are moving on to alternate browsers like Firefox and Brave, which have the added advantage of being open-source. While Opera GX takes pride in its edginess, jump-scaring all of its users was a step too far.

Did you like Opera GX's Eric Andre marketing campaign?

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