Web pages using AMP will now load 'twice as fast' as before, Google says

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Google’s making a bigger push for a faster mobile web. During a developer session at its 2017 Google I/O developer conference in Mountain View, California on Wednesday, the search giant gave an update on Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), an internet platform designed to speed up web pages.

Google said that AMP-enabled pages accessed from Google Search now load “twice as fast” as they did before, thanks to key optimizations made on the service’s back end. The AMP cache, which stores slimmed-down web pages on Google’s servers, now uses Google’s Brotli compression algorithm to reduce document size by 10 percent in supported web browsers, and compresses images 50 percent more efficiently without affecting quality.

Google also announced new AMP partners. Starting later this year, Tencent Qzone, China’s largest social network, and Weibo, the country’s third-largest website, will adopt AMP pages. Twitter said it would begin linking to AMP pages from the Twitter app for Android and iOS and Twitter Lite, its new, lightweight web app designed for low-end phones on unreliable connections. Tumblr said it would publish its 340 million blog pages across 500,000 domains in AMP. And E-Commerce giants eBay and Zalando pledged to implement AMP in the coming months.

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They join recent adopters like Squarespace, Reddit, Flipkart, TripAdvisor, Disney, Drugs.com, the NFL, The New York Times, BuzzFeed, Food Network, Parse, Vox Media, Conde Nast, CBS Interactive, Tumblr, Bing, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and hundreds of others.

Google said that as of August 2016, AMP-enabled sites have created more than 150 million AMP documents across 232 locales and 104 languages.

The I/O announcements build on AMP’s growing momentum. At Google’s 2017 AMP Conference in New York City last week, the company announced that Baidu, China’s largest search engine; and Sogou, another Chinese search engine; and Yahoo Japan would implement accelerated pages. Google said that as of last year, AMP-enabled websites have created hundreds of millions of AMP documents across 232 locales and 104 languages.

And they follow on the heels of new features. AMP Lite, an optimized version of AMP that kicks in over slower internet connections and on low-end smartphones, results in a 40 percent reduction in data transfer. Another, AMP Bind, allows internet retailers like Gap.com to build product pages with interactive elements like color and size selectors.

“We’re taking advantage of AMP to upgrade experiences,” AMP product manager Rudy Galifi told Digital Trends. “We’re very transparent, and we’re continuously collaborating with AMP partners. The community is going to weigh in.”

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