Google AMPing up Downloads for Cellphones

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Just about every cell phone user has been there. They have a few minutes in the day to check out an article. But it doesn’t download quickly enough for you to finish reading it during that brief window of opportunity.

Some may dismiss the issue, getting annoyed but not necessarily giving it a second thought. Google however has acknowledged this problem, and is doing something about it with its Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP). In a nutshell, when you search for an article or topic on Google with a mobile web browser, depending on the publisher, Google will link to an AMP page which loads four times faster, and better yet, takes up 1/10 of the wireless data. This article does a pretty good job of spelling out the technical tricks behind making it all work, and who’s on board. (Hint: The New York Times, BuzzFeed, and the BBC can be counted among the early supporters).

It seems the race started with Facebook’s Instant Articles for iPhone users, which was launched last fall. But there’s a key difference. Facebook’s Instant Articles are designed for its own social network. Google is working with the likes of Twitter and Pinterest to use AMP pages as well to create more open access

You could call it universal instant gratification. If you’re interested, you can read more about how the AMP wars started.

 

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