Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages project is designed to bring a faster web browsing experience to mobile devices. The company has been using the technology for a while, but wants to expand the number of users. The speed at which many websites load on mobiles is significantly slower than on computers, because of the design and the high number of advertisements on these pages. Google praised their solution, AMP, as an open-source website-publishing technology that will be available for all site owners to take advantage of. It will allow them to increase the speed of their pages, without losing the value of having ads on their website.
To take advantage of the product, developers would need to make an alternate version of their website using the open-source library provided by AMP. It is advertised as being compatible with most browsers, and having the ability to work across multiple platforms. In addition to being mobile friendly, some of the other advantages of AMP are: the inclusion of ads and analytics, shorter loading times, a lower bounce rate, enhanced SEO and compatibility with any browser. AMP would enable articles on all websites to load as quickly as on Facebook, which applies a similar technology.
Google is placing emphasis on the product’s benefits, in an effort to convince the company that controls the internet’s web standards to adopt this technology for the benefit of all. The tech lead for the AMP project, Malte Ubl, has written ’We now feel ready to take the next step and work to support more instant-loading content not based on AMP technology in areas of Google Search designed for this.’ The blog post in which this was addressed also noted that Google has learnt a significant amount from their research and application.
Many people question Google’s motives, however, as there is the widespread belief that the company pushes new technology for selfish reasons, rather than in an effort to make the internet better for all users. Web developers and publishers, although excited about the product, have expressed their concern about the implications of Google leading the way with AMP technology. An open letter was written in which the company was accused of planning to use this as a method of keeping users ‘within Google’s domain’ and diverting traffic away from other websites. Arguments against the product also state that even though it is open-source, doesn’t mean it is impartial.
Google is already one of the biggest controllers of the internet, and the major fear is that this will increase their dominance. The company has denied that this is the reason behind their pushing of the product. The controversy continues as they try to find ways of proving how genuine their intention is, while many experts urge companies to increase their website’s speed by simply ‘not doing things that are slow.’